Page 1

Engaging Gen Y Workplace Harassment Hiring PWDs


+ Mixing work and fun at Yahoo! + Land Transport Authority’s training roadmap + BBH’s talent challenge in China

Marriage minds HR’s role in M&A Price inc. GST $9.95

ISSUE 11.7


CONTENTS hrm11.7

COVER STORY 20 Marriage of Minds

Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) bring about significant organisational change. HRM looks at this process and examines how HR can play a vital role in M&A success.

IN THIS COVER STORY “A lack of communication is often the root of fears and uncertainties in any corporate environment. We made it a point to speak with our staff regarding the reasoning behind the partnership…” Maranda Barnes, Director of Business Development and Communication at TWG Tea, which sold a 35% stake of its business to Osim SENIOR JOURNALIST

Sumathi V Selvaretnam JOURNALISTS

Shalini Shukla-Pandey Priya de Langen TRAFFIC MANAGER

Patsy Ang


Amos Lee


John Paul Lozano


Evelyn Lim


Natasha Vincent Yogesh Chandiramani Charlene Lim





Kaveri Ayahsamy

George Walmsley


Richard Curzon

DC Photography Studio Times Printers Pte Ltd MICA (P) 158/07/2010 ISSN 0219-6883

Published by: Key Media Pte Ltd 121 Telok Ayer Street #02-01 Singapore 068590 • T: +65 6423-4631 • F: +65 6423-4632 • E:

issue 11.7


hrm11.7 CONTENTS




12 Inclusive workplaces

An increasing number of organisations are hiring people with disabilities (PWDs). HRM looks at the benefits of PWDs in the workplace and how employers can effectively integrate them into their organisations

16 Stamp of approval

28 Addressing the silent problem

Sexual harassment in a workplace is a serious issue that needs to be handled carefully. HRM finds out what companies are doing to educate their employees and what they can do to create a safe and dignified environment

Advertising agency, Bartle Bogle Hegarty (BBH) has worked with well-known brands such as Coca Cola, Johnnie Walker and Levi’s. Christine Ng, Managing Director of BBH China, tells HRM what it takes to retain creative talent in the tough advertising industry

32 Think fun, think Yahoo!

20 Marriage of minds

It is important to understand what drives Generation Y to get the most out of them. HRM reveals these drivers and looks at how companies are attracting, developing and retaining talented younger workers

Mergers and acquisitions can boost profits, yet the organisational changes that they bring raise uncertainties anxiety in a workforce. HR involvement is critical for long-term success.

24 Building engaging workplaces

Engagement and strong relationship management creates the glue between people and results, writes communication expert and executive coach, Ricky Nowak

Yahoo! is synonymous with fun. HRM speaks to HR Director, Jessie Lim, to reveal how Yahoo! uses fun to keep its employees engaged

38 Engaging young guns

42 Building a training roadmap

The Land Transport Authority believes in providing its employees with a challenging but rewarding career path. HRM examines how it uses training and development to help them achieve their goals

REGULARS 4 Analysis


50 In Person

55 Talent Feature

6 News

48 Resources

51 Talent Challenge

56 Executive Appointments

10 Leaders on Leadership

49 Talent Ladder

52 Twenty-four Seven

Contact us: Read something you like? Or something you don’t? Perhaps there’s some insight we haven’t considered? Have your say on HRM’s news, features, and contributions by emailing:


issue 11.7

Orchard Parksuites

Regency House

Central Square Village Residences

Far East Plaza

Riverside Village Residences

Cairnhill Towers

Hougang Village Residences

Leonie View

West Coast Village Residences


Job seekers

cherry-picking S

ingapore’s jobless rate has hit a three-year low, heating up competition for talent. The overall unemployment rate fell from 2.2% in December 2010 to 1.9% in March this year, according to the latest figures from the Ministry of Manpower (MOM). The data also revealed more jobs than job seekers. There were 139 job openings for every 100 candidates in the first quarter of this year- numbers not seen since the pre-recessionary high in 2007. Job vacancies also rose by 17% over the quarter to 54,000 - the highest since March 2006 when MOM started collecting such data. This rosy outlook is encouraging job seekers to be more discerning in job openings for every their search. “Currently, the talent market is a sellers’ market, where job-seekers are passively seeking job seekers in Q1, 2011 better pay-packages, career development opportunities, and sometimes a career switch,” says Samantha Chia, Senior Vice President, Group Human Resource, DBS Bank. More effort is needed to convince new candidates, she adds. Companies in the service industry appear to be most tightly squeezed in the current labour market, with jobs in this sector accounting for 31,600 or 73% of all vacancies in the first quarter of this year. KH Security Agency is an example of a company that has been facing challenges in hiring new employees. With rising transport costs, some job seekers prefer to have assignments that are within five to ten minutes from their home, says Gary Haris, the agency’s senior business development manager. His agency is also looking at alternative ways to plug the talent gap, like attracting more female workers into the male-dominated industry. “We are also trying to

139 100


issue 11.7

do job sharing with 6-hour shifts instead of 12-hour shifts. However, it costs more to employ two officers in the place of one,” Haris tells HRM. DBS Bank is reaching out to a diverse talent pool via career fairs such as E2i and mums@work, says Chia. The bank is also using innovative schemes such as the Active Neighbours Programme, to hire senior citizens and retirees to serve as service ambassadors in the bank on a part time basis. Employees are also expecting higher salaries and better medical benefits, even when they do not have the relevant skills says Vincent Lim, Chief Executive officer, BH Global Marine. Foreign workers are no longer a viable solution as the firm has hit its quota and needs to hire three local workers for every foreign engineer that it recruits, he says. Workforce productivity and talent management should be the top priorities for organisations, says Karin Clarke, Randstad Regional Director, Singapore and Malaysia. “To negate the tight labour market, companies need to provide staff with clear career progression opportunities, offer innovative reward and recognition programmes, and have forward-thinking retention practices.” “We are also seeing the return of skills training and development, which is a particularly high priority for the Millennials generation. Striking the right balance between recruiting new talent and keeping existing talent motivated will be the key to driving sustainable business growth,” Clarke says. BH Global Marine is looking at ways to encourage employees to stay for the long-haul. “We have a number of retention measures to reward employees who are able to stay with us on a longterm basis. These include long service awards, better medical benefits, career advancements, and training and development,” Lim says.

true talent shapes business, true knowledge finds it

With 45 offices located throughout the Asia Pacific and over 20 years experience, Randstad has an established network of strong local partnerships, history of best practice and dedication to HR knowledge development in Singapore and the region. Demonstrating Randstads commitment to the region, we have established our Asia Pacific headquarters here in Singapore. The move will help our clients overcome some of the biggest human capital challenges facing them today — critical talent shortages, leadership gaps and an increasingly mobile workforce. Randstad offers a diverse range of HR solutions from managed service programs and innovative recruitment process outsourcing models, through to temporary, contract and permanent staffing services across the widest range of specialist industry sectors. To partner with an industry leader committed to helping you overcome today’s talent challenges, contact +65 6510 1350 or visit





Skill shortage hinders growth

Skill shortage remains one of the major constraints to growth in the Indian economy. According to a recent World Bank working paper, ‘Employability and Skill set of Newly Graduated Engineers in India’, about 64% of employers in India are not satisfied with the skill sets of fresh engineering graduates.


Workers moving West

While employers say higher order thinking skills are lacking most amongst new graduates, most were very satisfied with their English communication skills. The skills shortage is more severe in sectors such as IT, infrastructure and power. “The skill shortage has forced India’s exporting IT sector to raise wages by 15% from 2003-06,” the report said. The authors of the working paper Andreas Blom and Hiroshi Saeki surveyed employers in 20 sectors such as IT, power and infrastructure in India. Half of the respondents were large companies with over 500 employees.

The 9th annual HRM Awards is now open for nominations. A premier event on the HR calendar, the awards will feature over 20 categories honouring the best in the industry. The 2012 event will also see the addition of two new award categories- ‘Innovation in Environmental Practices’ and ‘Best Health & Wellbeing’. The esteemed panel of judges will include Low Peck Kem, Divisional Director, National Human Resources Division, Ministry of Manpower (MOM); and Cynthia Cheong, Director for Work-Life, Number of nurses Employer Alliance. Thailand needs Help us support great HR by proposing your nominations at


Seventy-seven per cent of office employees in Taiwan are willing to move westward to China. According to surveys carried out by 1111 HR bank, reasons for the willingness to move include “mainland China has great market opportunities,” “to cultivate world views,” and because “it would look good on the resume”. These office employees hope to work in Shanghai, Beijing, or Suzhou in fields such as management, business trades and manufacturing. The survey also showed that 74% of those who moved to mainland China earned an extra NT$370,000 (US$13,000) yearly, and 57% who moved from Taiwan to the mainland were unwilling to move back. Recently, China and Taiwan signed the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), strengthening cross-strait economic exchanges. Lower prices for direct flights and frequent visits by mainlanders to Taiwan have also increased the number of Taiwanese jobseekers in China.


Best bonuses in banking The finance sector in Malaysia is the most generous when it comes to bonus payments. Of those who received more than six months bonus this year, more than half were from the finance and banking industry, according to the findings of a survey conducted by


issue 11.7

HRM Awards 2012 nominations

Of these, professionals about half of them received RM50,000 (US$16,400) or more in bonus payouts. Forty per cent received between RM1,000 to RM5,000 and 24% earned between RM5,000 to RM10,000. However, getting six months in bonuses is not common, with only 4.3% of respondents in general receiving that amount. Some 36% received only half to one month’s bonus and 29% got between one to two months’ salary in bonus. Those from the education sector were the worst off, with 71% of respondents reportedly getting only one month’s bonus or less, with none reporting bonus of four months and above.


Stiletto-ing behind Two-thirds of Singaporeans believe organisations do not do enough to help women into senior management. According to a survey by recruiting experts Hays, 62% say organisations do not do enough to help women reach the top or that more could be done. The remaining 38% said organisations already do enough to help women into senior management. “Within most industries there is a need to propel more women to senior management ranks,” said Chris Mead, General Manager of Hays in Singapore. “Women are not only in the minority in traditionally male-dominated industries, like trading desks or on construction projects. They’re also underrepresented across the spectrum of Singapore’s senior management workforce.” “From our experience, we know that many women look for a new job because of inadequate career development and progression opportunities. So a program to assist women into senior management will not only expand the pool of talent internally with leadership potential, but it can also help improve retention rates,” he added.


Fortune 500 lack Asian directors



Workforce health a priority

Only 4% of Amidst rising health care costs and a growing Fortune 500 concern over the health of their employees, companies, most multinationals see workforce health as a representing higher priority in next few years. America’s A Towers Watson survey found that largest and most three out of four companies said workforce powerful health and promoting health and well-being companies, have will be more of a priority this year and next, directors from while 87% said it will be a higher priority Douglas Foo, Asia. over the next two to four years. founder and CEO, ApexPal According to However, Asia-Pacific multinationals run research conducted by CTPartners, the risk of falling behind: only 23% of 105 directors of Asian descent hold an multinationals headquartered in Asia-Pacific accumulated total of 121 board seats currently have a global health strategy, in 104 companies. Of these 105 board compared to 32% globally. Also, only 62% of directors, 22 live and work in Asia Asia-Pacific respondents include wellness or and hold board seats health promotion at 21 Fortune 500 programmes, such as companies. These 22 preventive care, health directors are based in screenings or education, India’s mobile workforce by 2015 China (9), Japan (5), as part of their global India (4), Hong Kong health strategy, compared (2), Singapore (1) with 75% globally. and Taiwan (1), and include “Preventive care is still emerging in academia, entrepreneurs and senior Asia-Pacific. Historically, Asian companies executives. More financial institutions have adopted a relatively piecemeal approach to (6) have recruited these Asian workforce wellness, for instance implementing executives than other businesses. a health risk assessment programme but not “Asia Pacific covers some 30 following up with a longer-term assessment markets comprising over five billion strategy. Not surprisingly, these efforts have people speaking over 2,000 languages. Board directors with experience in working or managing SINGAPORE teams in the Asia Pacific will understand the talent dynamics of the current Asia Pacific marketplace well enough to recognise the unique hiring Singaporean jobseekers have indicated that opportunities that exist in today’s they are interested in working abroad, business world,” says Paul Aldrich, particularly in China, Japan or Korea, if given Managing Partner CTPartners in a chance to do so. According to a recent Hong Kong. survey done by, an “This is not to mention the overwhelming 85% have said that they want to important business and official work abroad if given the chance, in contrast to relationships and networks they bring just 5% who expressed no interest in doing so. to the table. In addition, they will also When asked about their level of seriousness be able to better balance global in working abroad, a third said they are policies and processes with the passively looking for such opportunities, while specific regional needs and differences another 32% said they are actively seeking such of Asia Pacific,” he added. opportunities. Another 29% said they are still


met with sporadic success,” said Mark Whatley, Director, South East Asia Benefits at Towers Watson. “However, as multinationals in the region begin to lead the way by addressing health and well-being more holistically, it can be expected that other Asian companies will follow,” he added. When asked to rank the three most important objectives for their health strategy, more than half (54%) of all respondents said it was to demonstrate their continued interest in employee well-being, resiliency and stress management. Among Asia-Pacific respondents, however, 62% ranked providing competitive rewards among the top three objectives, reflecting the highly competitive labour market in many parts of the region. Costs are also still a factor: 52% of all respondents and 42% of Asia-Pacific respondents, ranked controlling rising health costs as an objective of their global health strategy.

Most Singaporeans prefer to work abroad on the fence, while only 6% said they are not serious, or not interested at all in doing so. On the other hand, of those who want to work abroad, 38% cited career growth as the main driving factor, while 24% mentioned better financial remuneration. Another 19% said that the chance to travel was a compelling factor. Of those who have expressed disinterest in working abroad, 65% cited family as the primary reason for not wanting to work abroad, while another 11% mentioned that they prefer to remain in their comfort zones.

issue 11.7






Talent running dry

BP changes flexible working policy

More than half of US employers are facing a talent crunch, according to a survey by workforce solutions company, Manpower Group. The survey reported that 52% of US employers are experiencing difficulty filling mission-critical positions within their organisations. This is an increase from 14% in 2010. The Talent Shortage Survey also found that the number of employers struggling to fill positions is at an all-time high despite an unemployment rate that has diminished only marginally during the last year. Employers are struggling to find available talent more than their global counterparts, one in three of whom are having difficulty filling positions. According to the more than 1,300 US employers surveyed, the jobs that are most difficult to fill include Skilled Trades, Sales Representatives and Engineers, all of which have appeared on the US

list multiple times in the past. The most common reasons employers say they are having trouble filling jobs, include candidates looking for more pay than is offered, lack of technical skills and lack of experience. “The fact that companies cite a lack of skills or experience as a reason for talent shortages should be a wake-up call for employers, academia, government and individuals,” said Jonas Prising, President of the Americas, ManpowerGroup. “It is imperative that these stakeholders work together to address the supply-anddemand imbalance in the labour market in a systematic, agile and sustainable way. There may also be an increasing imbalance between employers willingness to pay higher salaries in what is still a soft general labour market compared to the salary expectations of prospective employees, especially those with skills that are in high demand, “ Prising says.

Global oil and gas company, BP will be doing away with its flexible working policy in some areas of the company in its largest office site at Sunbury, UK, after a review of business practices. Over the past 10 years, the company has adopted a policy whereby employees who have completed their tasks, could take one Friday off every two weeks, reported HR Magazine, UK. BP’s spokesperson said: “Only some parts of the organisation had this system in place. It was never in employees’ terms and conditions and was never a formal employee benefit.” He also added that “the change will not be detrimental to our work-life balance schemes” as it is just one of the many initiatives that is being offered by the company. He mentioned that in departments where this “nine-day fortnight” was not being offered, they still attracted recruits. In 2003, BP was named one of model 50 employers, partly because of their flexible working arrangement, by the Department of Trade and Industry.


What keeps CIOs awake? Concerns over IT security breaches are keeping Chief Information Officers (CIOs) in the US awake at night, according to the The CIO Insomnia Report. A total of 1,400 CIOs in the US were surveyed to examine the top challenges facing IT leaders, and how they are addressing them while balancing innovation and limited resources to remain competitive. The report was released by workforce solutions company, Robert Half. The report revealed that the top concern for CIOs was IT security breaches, followed by fear of falling behind in technology and staffing limits. IT funding was their last concern. Regarding IT security breaches, a total of 24% of CIOs said their top worry is keeping


issue 11.7

their organisations’ sensitive data out of the wrong hands. Also, 65% estimate their firm suffers three or more IT security breaches annually while 10% gave a more nightmarish scenario of 26 security violations each year. About 13% of CIOs cited hardware and software upgrades as their most pressing concern while 37% said they plan to implement hardware and software upgrades as the economy continues to improve. Only 10% of CIOs cited heavy workloads as their most pressing concern. Also, 63% said understaffing has limited their ability to implement new technologies that will give their organisations a competitive edge. Tim Hird, Managing Director of Singapore and Japan, said: “Indeed, CIOs

today face a tough combination of technology and staffing trends, and those who are able to balance advancement and competitiveness with effective manpower strategies are likely to enjoy the best sleep at night.”

leaders on leadership

Retaining top talent How do you retain your most productive employees? How can leaders build stronger emotional bonds with them? James R. Hicks

President, Global Payments Asia Pacific

Prof London Lucien Ooi Peng Jin

Chairman, Division of Surgery, Singapore General Hospital

Recognising that business success is peoplebased and having a clear understanding of what drives employee success is fundamental in retaining critical employees. Setting clear corporate objectives of employee growth helps demonstrate to key employees that the company is committed to their long-term success. Fostering a team-based culture that embraces challenges while celebrating results helps all employees better understand the factors that will make them more productive and successful. Building a strong emotional bond requires open and honest two-way communication. Employee surveys, one-on-one career discussions and less formal gatherings allow leaders to listen and learn. Knowing the employee’s personal aspirations means that a personalised plan can be developed, such as on-the-job training coupled with such things as job rotation, promotion or even relocation. Key individuals can learn and grow while broadening their exposure within the company worldwide. Building the right environment, recognising accomplishments, clearly understanding an employee’s aspirations and then creating a clear path to ongoing success remain the cornerstones to retaining key employees and growing the bonds between employees and leaders.


issue 11.7

Keeping key staff that provide a company’s core services, like surgeons in a hospital, is important in maintaining a leading edge. However, such individuals are also highly mobile and it is important to build strong bonds to retain them. Professionals are driven by 5Ps: » Purse » Prestige » Power » Passion » Purpose Knowing which P matters more to whom is key to retaining talent. Being a practising surgeon myself helps me understand my staff and build a strong emotional bond with them. It is important that senior management is not distinct from staff. For staff to understand that whatever decisions I make will also have a direct impact on me and my practice, provides me with the moral authority to implement policies and practices, especially those that may not be so popular. Understanding individual career needs and advancement prospects also builds a strong loyalty to the company. Being recognised by the company shows belonging and rootedness as it is very difficult for someone to leave the home where he grew up in and had great memories.

Alex Porteous

Hotel Manager, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts

Today’s new workforce is not just looking for a job, but a job experience. At Four Seasons Hotel Singapore, the Guest Experience and the Employee Experience go hand-in-hand. These traits are imperative in helping us to give our employees the best job experience possible: » Sharing and engaging regularly with the team: This ensures that everyone is a part of the Hotel’s operation. » Effective employee recognition: We celebrate small successes and don’t wait for a major achievement to reward individuals and encourage them to do more of it. » Internal promotion and growth: This ensures that everyone is committed and contributing, allowing us to grow talent. » Taking care of the “Heart of the House” environment (employee entrance, locker rooms and showers, uniforms and cafeteria): This is so that the team feels proud when they dress up and come to work. » Promoting work-life harmony: We encourage a healthier lifestyle and support all employees’ care and interest in the community » Dealing with under-performance: Being committed to train, re-train and take the necessary corrective action is important.


Providing you with innovative workforce solutions Kelly Commercial

Offers search and selection expertise in

Provides general recruitment solutions from entry level to junior executive positions

Kelly Engineering Resources Focuses on placing engineering professionals in full-time, contract and contract-to-hire employment

Kelly Outsourcing and Consulting Group

Kelly Selection

placing mid to senior functionally focused professionals

Kelly IT Resources

and HR consulting solutions

Kelly Scientific Resources Focuses on recruiting scientific professionals

Specializes in mid to senior level permanent and contract IT recruitment

Global innovator of managed outsourcing

for a diverse spectrum of industries

Kelly has been at the forefront of the recruitment industry for over 60 years and has set the industry benchmark with our innovative recruitment and retention strategies. We pride ourselves in delivering a high level of customer service and providing the right talent in accordance with our clients’ requirements. All our candidates undergo a stringent screening process to ensure they are the best possible fit for the job. For more than 30 years in Singapore, and with offices across the island, Kelly has been partnering Singapore’s leading companies and delivering the best talent available.





Inclusive workplaces An increasing number of organisations are hiring people with disabilities (PWDs). HRM looks at the benefits of PWDs in the workplace and how employers can effectively integrate them into their organisations By Priya de Langen


ccording to the World Health Organisation, 10% the global population, or 650 million people, are disabled. The greatest concentration of PWDs – 400 million people – is in and around the Asia Pacific region. Whether the disability is visible or otherwise, an increasing number of organisations are employing PWDs and realising the often signfiicant contribution they are capable of delivering. In addition to private sector recruitment drives and disability programmes, government organisations too are promoting awareness of the employability of PWDs, ranging from special training programmes to funds for organisations.

The case for employing PWDs

There are a number of challenges to recruiting PWDs, but one of the biggest obstacles is the negative mentality towards them, according to experts. These misconceptions can often be put down to several factors, from cultural upbringing to common misconceptions.


issue 11.7

“Many employers have a fear of the unknown and usually have a stereotypical mindset when it comes to PWDs, being unsure if these employees are equally competent when compared to able-bodied employees,” says Jagdeep Thakral, Executive Assistant Manager of Holiday Inn Singapore Orchard City Centre. Employers could also be worried about the required time to train PWDs or whether they are able to handle “various operations and situations that might arise in the workplace”, Thakral adds. Lee Yew Cheong, Manager, Projects for the Singapore National Employers Foundation (SNEF), says that most employers that his organisation has interacted with “are not averse to the idea of hiring PWDs” but they still “carry a certain stereotypical mindset regarding them”. Lee explains that “there is a cultural aversion to talk openly about someone’s disabilities” in Chinese-dominant societies like Singapore, Hong Kong or China. However, there have been many case studies expounding the benefits of hiring PWDs and the


Image from “A Guidebook for Employers on Employment of Persons with Disabilities” by SNEF

contribution they can make to an organisation. The guidebook, Towards Disability Con­fidence: A Resource Guide for Employers in Singapore and Hong Kong, provides tips and guidelines for employers and details case studies of organisations in Singapore and Hong Kong that have successfully integrated PWDs into their workplaces. Another, the Employers Guide: Series on Employment of Persons with Disabilities also provides helpful information for businesses considering hiring PWDs. These publications explain that employers that hire PWDs will be tapping into a wider talent pool and contribute to creating barrier-free working environments. Also, PWDs can provide alternative perspectives at work since their life experiences, make them more adept at problem-solving. Furthermore, studies show that communities tend to have a better opinion of companies that hire PWDs, as it boosts corporate image and reputation. “By providing an opportunity for disabled people, you are showing others that you are hiring for the value and talent that one can offer, not the

disability that one has,” explains Regana Mydin Manager, Disabled People’s Association, Singapore, in the Towards Disability Con­fidence report. “By doing this, you also get an opportunity to work with good talent.”

Awareness is the way forward Government bodies and private organisations in Singapore have been taking steps over the past few years to heighten awareness of the employability of PWDs. An ‘Enabling Masterplan Committee’ was set up by the Singapore government, which was led by the Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports (MCYS) to

Mind your language There are appropriate terminologies to use when speaking to or about people with disabilities. The following terms will help prevent degrading PWDs or reinforcing misconceptions: Commonly used Suffering from, a victim of or afflicted with a disability Retarded or slow Wheelchair-bound Crippled or lame

Instead say Has a disability Has a developmental disability Uses a wheelchair Has a mobility impairment

Source: Employers Guide: Series on Employment of Persons with Disabilities

issue 11.7



“Many employers have a fear of the unknown and usually have a stereotypical mindset when it comes to PWDs, being unsure if these employees are equally competent when compared to able-bodied employees” Jagdeep Thakral, Executive Assistant Manager, Holiday Inn Singapore Orchard City Centre

develop ideas to help integrate PWDs into society. Based on the committee’s recommendations, various initiatives were adopted by the government in 2007. One of it was the Disability Awareness Public Education (DAPE) Campaign, to educate the public and employers about the issue and acknowledge that employment is the best form of self-reliance for PWDs. The Open Door Fund (ODF), which is administered by SNEF, is available to employers that would like to employ individuals with disabilities. Lee says that it helps “defray some of the employer costs associated with creating jobs for PWDs”. Employers can get a subsidy of up to S$100,000 to redesign jobs, modify workplaces or fund training and integration programmes for PWDs. Since 2006, Lee says that more than 120 companies have utilised this fund to “place over 500 jobs for PWDs”. Another useful programme for employers and PWDs is the online recruitment portal, the ODF Job database, which was developed by SNEF in 2008. The portal helps match PWDs for a suitable position with potential employers. Employers can also attend diversity management workshops “developed for line managers and supervisors to equip them with skills to manage PWDs at their workplace” by SNEF and the Tripartite Alliance for Fair Employment Practices (TAFEP). Since these workshops started in 2009, more than 60 companies have attended the three-day course. Centres for Training and Integration (CTI) were set up in July last year “to provide industry-specific skills training in a real work environment for PWDs, thus increasing their employment potential”, says Lee. Two organisations, Holiday Inn Singapore Orchard City Centre and Eureka Call Centre Systems Singapore, took part in CTI pilot training. Presently, the organisations are aiming to train 150 PWDs over the next four years.

PWDs at work

Employers agree that there is an increased awareness that organisations understand the employability of


issue 11.7

PWDs as well as the need for a diverse workforce. “We feel that the supporting, training and employment of PWDs is definitely on the rise, especially with increased global awareness on the need, and call for companies and individuals alike to be socially responsible citizens,” says Holiday Inn’s Thakral. Holiday Inn has a long history of hiring PWDs – it started by employing Edward Wong, a PWD in 1989, and Thakral proudly notes that Wong is still with the organisation. Currently, 10% of the hotel’s total workforce comprises PWDs and they perform duties such as housekeeping, stewarding as well as kitchen work. George Kwok, Head of Human Resources for ThaiExpress Concepts, affirms that there is a gradual change in attitudes but also acknowledges that a lack of manpower in certain industries such as food and beverages (F&B) has helped increase the interest in the PWD talent pool. “I personally think the reluctance to employ deaf and mute people is changing, as the F&B industry is suffering from manpower shortage as most Singaporeans do not want to work in that environment since the work is demanding,” he says. ThaiExpress Concepts is an organisation that has been employing individuals with disabilities since 2009. The company currently has eight PWDs (who are deaf and mute) in its employ – two cooks and six servers. Though no special changes were made to the physical workplace environment, Kwok says it was challenging for the company as it had to “ensure that they [PWDs] are comfortable with the job functions with proper training and guidance”. In order for them to learn their roles and responsibilities, ThaiExpress implemented a buddy system, in which each PWD has a buddy to “guide and train them at the beginning”. Training is important to help PWDs in getting up to speed with work, and Thakral says Holiday Inn uses a few types of programmes in this process. The organisation employs mildintellectually disabled individuals so a buddy system is used, in which a colleague is assigned to a PWD to help with their duties and social skills. Following an assessment from a


Initiatives to integrate PWDs in Singapore supervisor, the PWD is able to work on their own. The hotel also houses a CTI, and a sixmonth on-the-job training is provided to trainees before they commence work. “Job roles and responsibilities are allocated based on their suitability to the individual, and not all jobs in the hotel are complex so training plans are formulated after assessing the PWD’s suitability,” says Thakral. Holiday Inn also invests in a talent pipeline of PWDs. The hotel collaborates with Delta Senior School (a school for mild-intellectually disabled individuals) to help train students utilising a special curriculum. Students are trained in a replica of a hotel room to provide them with the skills to apply to real-life work settings.

+ Open Door Fund (previously referred to as the Enable Fund) is a financial support programme for employers to create jobs for PWDs + The ODF online recruitment portal ( helps match PWDs and employers + The Enabling Employers Network (EEN) is an alliance of employers who have successfully hired PWDs. EEN also helps advance employment opportunities for PWDs in Singapore. The CTI is part of EEN’s initiative + Diversity management workshops are regularly conducted by SNEF for HR professionals that highlight information for hiring and retaining PWDs + Guidebooks have been released by SNEF and MCYS to provide tips and information on integrating PWDs at work

PWDs “generally require some time to integrate into a new working environment” as well as get used to their roles, Thakral acknowledges, and as such, he says supervisors need patience to work with them. However, once they have adapted to their roles and environment, he says “they are highly dedicated and committed to their work.”

Course Highlights WSQ Lean Six Sigma Date: 18 to 22 Jul 2011 Standard Fee: S$1500

Managing Difficult People Date: 14 Jul 2011 Standard Fee: S$635

Introduction to Micro and Nano Technologies Date: 21 to 22 Jul 2011 Standard Fee: S$835

Power Speaking: Stand Up and Be Heard - from presentations to speeches

Coaching & Mentoring Workshop Date: 15 to 16 Aug 2011 Standard Fee: S$635

Facilitation Skills for Project Team Leaders Date: 16 to 17 Aug 2011 Standard Fee: S$835

Linux for Embedded Systems Date: 17 to 19 Aug 2011 Standard Fee: S$1,155

Creative Thinking Made Easy Date: 17 Aug 2011 Standard Fee: S$375

Date: 14 to 15 Jul 2011 Standard Fee: S$635

For enquiries, please call 6790 4212 or email issue 11.7


leaders talk hr

Stamp approval of

Advertising agency, Bartle Bogle Hegarty (BBH) is well-known for its creative advertising work with big brands such as Coca Cola, Johnnie Walker and Levi’s. Singapore-born, Christine Ng, Managing Director of BBH China, tells HRM what it takes to retain talent that can make or break business in the tough advertising industry By Priya de Langen


ow many of us can boast that we have had a postal stamp created in our honour? Christine Ng, Managing Director of advertising agency BBH China, certainly can. China Post, China’s national post bureau, recently released commemorative national stamps with Ng’s image for winning the ‘Top 10 Influential Entrepreneurs Award’ for her contributions to the creative industry in the country. Though the honour came as a surprise for Singapore-born Ng, the progress that BBH China has made since it started operating in the country in 2006 with Ng at the helm is commendable. It has won numerous regional and domestic accolades, including being named the number one agency in China to provide the highest client satisfaction (according to R3 Consultants global agency scope study), MEDIA Magazine’s Creative Agency of the Year 2009 (BBH Asia) and six Webby Digital Awards 2010. BBH was founded about 30 years ago in London and has since expanded to six countries, including China. Ng says: “We are a small network, but it is a global network,” with multinational clients including Coca Cola, Johnnie Walker and Unilever.


issue 11.7

leaders talk hr

issue 11.7


leaders talk hr

“There is open communication as employees can walk up to one of their senior managers and have a chat in their offices at any time, including the CEO”

Before Ng established BBH China, she was the GM and Media Director of BBH Asia Pacific (Singapore) and had worked there for 10 years. In establishing BBH’s presence in China, she says she wanted the BBH China team to show that good creative work can come from the country – to establish a ‘Created in China’ statement instead of ‘Made in China’. “China is not only a country that produces manufacturing finished products but it can be a hub of originality and creativity,” says Ng, who notes that 70% of BBH China’s creative work is employed on a regional and global basis.

Managing the talent landscape

Earning such accolades and praise is no easy feat, and Ng says that finding and hiring the right talent for the transient advertising industry is difficult in Christine Ng, MD, China. She compares China to the working BBH China environment in Hong Kong about 15 years ago, and says that China is experiencing strong demand for experienced advertising professionals. Another challenge is that candidates interested in the advertising industry generally do not possess much work experience, but have high salary expectations and expect senior titles, she adds. Though it was “tempting to bring in a team to show the client”, she says the firm chose to instead stick to strict hiring process standards and recruit selectively. “Every healthy business wants to grow but we are careful. At what cost is your growth? Sometimes, you run the risk of growth affecting the company culture,” she says. The agency carefully hired 15 people in the first year, With 17 years’ experience in the advertising industry, Christine Ng started with half of them being local at Singapore-based agency, DNC, before moving onto DYR Singapore Chinese. To help establish where she ran its media division. BBH China and a consistent She was part of the founding team of BBH Asia Pacific, the agency’s organisational culture, some first offshore office based in Singapore in 1996. She progressed to employees from BBH’s global becoming its Media Director and GM. She handled the regional business offices were also transferred for clients including Levi’s and Johnnie Walker. Having built a successful across to the China office. business in Singapore for BBH over 10 years, Ng relocated to Shanghai to “We transferred some set up BBH China in 2006 and took up the position of Managing Director. people from other offices such

Bio Brief


issue 11.7

leaders talk hr

me-myself-i as Singapore for a short-term. So, when new employees joined, they had a reference point on how people should work with each other,” she says. The agency has a collaborative work culture and Ng candidly affirms that prima donnas would not survive in BBH. When the China office was set up, she recalls that everyone on the small team had to “roll up their sleeves and do everything”. All employees from different departments, whether they were in creative or client management, had to be present during client briefings, and Ng says this collaborative team approach ultimately set the tone of the workplace for new employees.

Encouraging open communication

There are many challenges in dealing with employees, especially when it comes to cross– cultural communication, according to Ng. “My Chinese colleagues are very independent-thinking but sometimes due to their cultural upbringing, thinking they do not want to lose face or disagree with another person, they don’t voice their opinions. You have to encourage them to communicate that,” she explains. This is especially important since the BBH China team is comprised of local as well as international employees. Consequently, meetings are conducted in both English and Mandarin. However, Ng says she takes Chinese colleagues who have difficulty expressing their views aside to listen to their opinions. Open communication is constantly encouraged by BBH China’s management, and Ng says that she regularly invites colleagues to chat over coffee in order to observe the mood of the team – whether they are happy or if local employees are getting along with their expatriate colleagues. “There is open communication as employees can walk up to one of their senior managers and have a chat in their offices at any time, including the CEO,” she says. If there is a new client project, team members are encouraged by the agency’s management to contribute their ideas or assist with its development and execution. This way, Ng says employees are given opportunities to be creative and explore opportunities.

Nurturing potential and retaining employees

+ + + + + + +

I love: Chilli crab I hate: Office politics My inspiration is: Aung San Sun Kyi My biggest strength: To listen with understanding My weakness is: Shoes In five years’ time, I’d like to be: A student Favourite anecdote: People take up 95% of your time. Only 5% is work!

Nurturing talent is one of BBH’s top priorities, and the agency has many training and development programmes in place across the globe. One way the agency does this is through secondments. “For example, our UK office has very good content department personnel, so we bring them over and employees can learn from them,” says Ng. “It gives them on-the-job training.” Internal coaching also plays an important role at BBH, with senior personnel, referred to as ambassadors, from overseas offices visiting others to conduct customised workshops. BBH also has a business partnership with Hyper Island Digital University, known as ‘the world’s digital Harvard’ with offices in Stockholm, New York and London. BBH’s Singapore team brought trainers over to conduct workshops and Ng says she wants to do the same for BBH China. The founders of BBH also travel to each of the agency’s global offices two or three times a year, which makes all employees “feel like they are part of a bigger thing”, says Ng. Senior personnel are also presented with development opportunities, with 20 chosen from BBH offices around the world to undertake a London-based “mini-MBA programme”, a two-week course specifically for the advertising industry. This programme has been running for the past five years and it also helps the BBH assess future management potential. BBH China has grown rapidly from 15 employees to a total of 70 today, and the local employees that the agency hired in the first year have stayed on, which Ng believes is a positive sign since the advertising industry usually suffers from a high turnover rate.

issue 11.7



Marriage minds HR’s role in M&A of


issue 11.7


Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) bring about significant organisational change. HRM looks at this process and examines how HR can play a vital role in M&A success By Sumathi V Selvaretnam


ot all M&As are a match-made in heaven. The nine-year corporate marriage between media giants Time Warner and America Online – one of the biggest mergers in corporate history, was dissolved in 2009 after it failed to reach business goals. Poor people management was one of the factors that contributed to its failure. A merger or acquisition marks a period of change and uncertainty for employees. During an M&A, one of the key concerns employees face is retrenchment, says Miranda Lee, Director, KPMG Advisory Services. “Even if they have not been identified in an initial list, they may continue to worry if there may be further redundancies made when the amalgamated organisation achieves new synergies and efficiencies.” Employees who remain also face uncertainties relating to job redeployment, new roles, new superiors and a new corporate culture.

Pre-merger preparation

HR’s early involvement in an M&A can help smooth potential bumps in the road ahead. Before the acquisition, it needs to carry out due diligence in areas such as employee demographics, work contracts as well as local labour legislation. A key benefit of HR due diligence is that it allows the potential buyer to assess and limit the risks of liability by examining the other party’s HR records, says Lee. HR can look out for evidence of ongoing litigation, charges of unfair labour practices or grievances and other complaints. “HR due diligence allows the potential buyer to negotiate the structure for a better deal,” Lee says. Staff retention is an important part of the M&A process. HR needs to identify key talent who will be critical in the new or integrated organisation. “To stem the potential loss of important talent and ensure a smooth transition, contracts drawn up for such senior executives often include a retention bonus which can range between 12 to 36 months,” Lee says. issue 11.7




Cultural Fusion A merger of equals could lead to the evolution of a brand new corporate culture. When Nokia and Siemens joined forces in 2007, they held a 72-hour online discussion to determine the corporate values that the merged entity should follow. Called a “Values Jam” the event saw 9000 people discussing, chatting and thinking in real-time with each other and the most senior leaders in the organisation, says Ciaron Murphy, Head of HR, Nokia Siemens Networks Asia Pacific. A focus group from each company was asked to describe their culture to an artist who then transposed these impressions into pictures of Nokia and Siemens on a good day and a bad day, says Murphy. “These visuals really got traction and were used in employee engagement sessions to discuss differences across the company.”

Cultural Clash A popularly cited example of a merger gone wrong is the unsuccessful union between major car manufacturers Daimler-Benz and Chrysler. Cultural differences were viewed as the biggest reason behind the split. German-based Daimler-Benz followed a more formal and structured management style while its American counterpart Chrysler took a more relaxed and freewheeling approach. This led them to view critical areas such as pay scales and travel expenses differently. When Daimler-Benz started to assert its dominance, employees from Chrysler became unhappy and many key executives left the organisation.


issue 11.7

Compensation and benefits is another area of concern for employees. When Chinese PC maker Lenovo acquired IBM’s PC division, it decided to adopt IBM’s benefits policy for transferring employees. This helped reassure them that they would fit into the new structure, says Tan Ai Sim, Director, HR, ASEAN, Lenovo. Many multinational corporations also acquire businesses in new geographies, and tax laws vary from place to place. Remuneration reporting is one area that is often overlooked by HR, says Lee. “The employer’s tax reporting review is important, as there may be heavy potential penalties associated for not complying with the relevant tax reporting requirements.”

Open communication

M&As are marked by a period of transition often coupled with speculation and uncertainty, and as such, management needs to constantly engage employees and keep them in the loop about the latest developments. A lack of communication is often the root of fears and uncertainties in any corporate environment, Maranda Barnes, Director of Business Development and Communications, TWG Tea, tells HRM. When the company sold a 35% stake to massage-chair maker Osim in April, it made sure that its employees were kept in the loop about changes. “We made it a point to speak with our staff regarding the reasoning behind this partnership and how it is a step towards expansion and the greater success of the company. Since there will be no impact on their jobs, we witnessed more excitement than uncertainty regarding the joint venture amongst our staff,” Barnes says. Open communication also helped Lenovo and IBM employees integrate successfully. Lenovo conducted employee engagement surveys, skip-level meetings and closed-door sharing sessions between employees and HR, says Tan. “It helped to allay the apprehensions of the affected employees. Any doubts were clarified instantly and that helped to stop rumours or ’water-cooler talks’.” Lee says that important messages must be delivered by the CEO, and reinforced regularly with updates by line managers. “Face-to-face communication is the best approach, especially immediately before and after the date of acquisition or merger,” she says. It also helps to for HR to secure the buy-in of employees coming into the fold. Commodities giant Olam believes in selling itself to employees in the company that it is about to acquire. “The last we thing we need is redundancy. We tell them that their ambitions and greater aspirations will be unharmed. Most of the businesses we


acquire focus on a single region, so joining us allows them to expand their horizons,” says Shankar Athreya, Head, Strategic Investments (M&A), Olam International. Employees from acquired companies who show potential are also given leadership opportunities throughout the organisation.

Bridging cultures

A KPMG study released in 2008 found that cultural complexities remain one of the biggest post- deal challenges in M&As. According to Lee, a clash of culture and styles can impede the smooth integration of the workforce and also has the potential to create a barrier to change. HR needs to review the target organisation’s culture and leadership style during the due diligence process. Olam for example, looks out for cultural traits that are reflective of its own values, like the spirit of entrepreneurship, says Athreya. As an organisation that is constantly expanding, Olam also seeks out companies that share its passion for growth. While + Leadership finding a good match is + Governance important, Olam does not + Communications believe in too much + Business processes change. “It is important + Performance management that the company keeps it and rewards systems culture as it has a value Source: BearingPoint Management and Technology Consultants proposition towards its customers. We don’t want to affect that,” he says. Lenovo made special arrangements to ensure a smooth integration. IBM staff were concerned about fitting in with Lenovo’s existing culture and colleagues, since it is a Chinese company, says Tan. To help them, Lenovo arranged Mandarin classes for non-Mandarin speaking employees to work better with their counterparts in China. It also ran a programme called “Managing Across Cultures” which focused on an ‘East meets West’ management approach, and employees learnt strategies for incorporating the diverse talents and insights of team members.

“Face-to-face communication is the best approach especially immediately before and after the date of acquisition or merger” Miranda Lee, Director, KPMG Advisory Services

Five areas of cultural conflict

issue 11.7


guest contributor


Engaging Workplaces Engagement and strong relationship management creates the glue between people and results, writes communication expert and executive coach, Ricky Nowak


ngaging and engaged workplaces and their people don’t happen by good luck and good intent. They are nurtured by people who respect good values, diversity and relationships and above all, appreciate the people who work for and with them. And while the sweet spot where people and engagement meet is the foundation for successful and sustainable companies, it takes continuing commitment and passion from the lunch room, meeting room right through to the board room to make it happen and last. Engaging workplaces are formed and shaped by diverse personalities, robust conversations, commitment to a set of values and behaviours that focus on high performance and results, often bypassing ego and the obsolete. They are geared up to be the drivers of change and prepared to challenge the predictable patterns of behaviour so people are encouraged to truly engage in thinking and opportunities - both analytically and globally.


issue 11.7

guest contributor

So what does this mean for your organisation? On a micro level it -means HR managers are in a unique position to be the conduit between staff and the connection to their work. This connection enables them to develop professionally as well as personally so that they understand how their work fits into the context of the whole organisation and has the spin off effect to connect people internally. On a macro level, it means there is a need for leaders in business and organisations to provide resources, tools and the overall environment that supports that engagement and the work of the HR Manager. Engagement is everyone’s responsibility. But here’s the cold hard facts in reality with figures from the US in a BlessingWhite Report (2008) stating that “depending on what is happening around them, only 24% of employees are engaged at work and only 18% perform at optimum level while they are in the honeymoon stage of employment.” It indicates that when “sameness” occurs, error rates, illness, accidents and stress levels soar causing huge loss of revenue, productivity and often staff. So what can HR do to create an engaged and Only engaging workplace? Well, short of having a golden egg to spend every time people need something and a crystal ball to see what will be happening in the future, here are some simple, low cost or no cost strategies that HR can put in place: Checking alignment of employees values against of employees are engaged at work the values, goals and aspirations of the organisation is a Source: BlessingWhite Report 2008 good starting point! If this is checked at the recruitment stage, it will quickly and easily identify if the candidate is a good “engagement match” not just a good skills match. And while HR is also busily recruiting on ability, it’s a good time to assess historically what the career path of that person has been like and then define whether the company can actually offer opportunities the person will aspire to. If there is no career path, save yourself the trouble! And if it’s not hard enough at the moment to stay focused anyway, just consider the constant interruptions from mobile phones, texting, Twitter, Facebook, and other social pressures that take people away from engaging with a sense of flow and completion! Therefore there has never been a more important time in the wake of the Great Financial Crisis to protect and respect the time, place and value of staff so they can contribute to the success of the organisations as well as their own financial future. Having said that, it is also now harder for employers to engage staff as each generation at work has been influenced by different and differing factors, which contribute to the way people think, behave and ultimately respond to. Many employers across Australasia will also agree now that unless there is a strong top


issue 11.7


guest contributor

“Today, engagement begins with having courageous and involved conversations at all levels, it means opportunities for staff to contribute to the organisation’s vision, work and to connect with senior management and leadership” Ricky Nowak, communication expert and executive coach

down engagement culture that provides a variety of opportunities, people will walk with their feet to other organisations that engage hearts, heads and hands. The key therefore is to be in the moment and recognise where and when people need and want to develop themselves and almost pre-empt the next tipping point for them and the organisation – thus getting ahead of the curve. This is significantly different from years gone by when the employer controlled the environment and the conversations. Today, engagement begins with having courageous and involved conversations at all levels, it means opportunities for staff to contribute to the organisation’s vision, work and to connect with senior management and leadership. It’s not easy when there are so many different cultures, races, positions, ages and backgrounds to consider but in many ways, this diversity make workplaces engaging. Imagine how uninspiring a workplace would be if everyone was the same – so rather than thinking that engaging different people is hard, flip the mindset to see that difference is exactly what makes it better. + Ricky Nowak’s free eBook , The 8 Rings of Engagement, can be downloaded at


issue 11.7


Sexual harassment in a workplace is a serious issue that needs to be handled carefully. HRM finds out what companies are doing to educate their employees and what they can do to create a safe and dignified environment By Priya de Langen

Addressing the

silent problem 28

issue 11.7



he dark and poignant movie, North Country, depicts female employees in a US construction company subjected to sexual harassment by their male colleagues – from taunts to physical abuse. By the end of the movie, the heroine of the show goes on to sue the company with her colleagues and win millions of dollars in compensation. The most disturbing fact of the film was that it was based on a true story. It is just one of the serious workplace harassment cases that have been portrayed in media in the recent years. The issue of sexual harassment in the workplace has been getting more attention over the past decade, especially in Asia. In the 1990s, governments around the region, including those in India, Thailand and Malaysia, have enacted laws against workplace harassment, while government bodies and women’s organisations have advocated changes or heightened awareness of this problem. Employers too have an important role in creating a safe workplace for their employees through clear HR policies, grievance procedures as well as raising awareness of the hazards of workplace harassment.

The case against harassment

The International Labour Organisation (ILO) conducted a comprehensive study, Action against Sexual Harassment at Work in Asia and the Pacific, which covers over a range of issues, from a definition of sexual harassment through to personal accounts and the benefits of workplace training in the issue. The ILO specifically defines workplace harassment as “unwelcomed sexual advances or verbal or physical conduct” that could affect a person’s work productivity, or which creates a hostile or offensive working environment. The ILO report includes case studies from around Asia and the Pacific region, and in many cases, victims of workplace sexual harassment refuse to report it for a variety of reasons, from fear of losing their jobs to being stigmatised in society as well as not knowing who to report it to.

Definition of sexual harassment in a workplace “Unwelcome sexual advances or verbal or Corinna Lim, physical conduct of a sexual nature which has Executive Director, the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering Association of Women with the individual’s work performance or for Action & Research creating an intimidating, hostile, abusive or (AWARE), says the offensive working environment” tricky issue of workplace Source: ILO Thesaurus harassment is that “it is tied to a job and depending on the culture of the person he or she might not want to talk about it”. Research shows that victims of workplace harassment in Singapore can be both women and men, though women are affected more. In a survey of 500 people by AWARE, Research Study on Workplace Sexual Harassment (2008), 58% of women and 42% of men indicated they had been harassed at work. The report also revealed that young people are most likely to be targeted. Lim says that young people who are in their first or second years at work are most likely to be harassed as “they are eager to please and perpetrators are likely to target them as they are easy prey”. Research also shows that in many cases, perpetrators are either a colleague or manager. In the AWARE study, 27% were harassed by their colleagues while 17% were harassed by their superiors. Experts say that besides affecting the victim, the issue also affects organisations as it could lead to workplace tensions, lower productivity as well as damage the company’s reputation. In worst case scenarios, companies have had lawsuits filed against them. “The negative effects of harassment are, however, by no means confined to the individual,” explains Ian Chambers, Director of Bangkok Area Office and East Asia Multidisciplinary Advisory Team, in the ILO report. “Research has shown very clearly that workplaces in which harassment is allowed to occur tend to have sharply falling productivity. Sexual harassment is bad for business, as well as being ethically and socially unacceptable.” issue 11.7



Workplace harassment prevention policies in place in Asia + Malaysia: In 1999, a Code of Practice on the Prevention and Eradication of Sexual Harassment in the Workplace was introduced by the Ministry of Human Resources. + Thailand: The Prevention and Eradication of Sexual Harassment in the Workplace in 1999 provides guidelines to employers on forms of sexual harassments and grievances procedures. + Philippines: In 1995, the Philippines passed an Anti-Sexual Harassment Act, and its Civil Service Commission adopted guidelines to promote zero-tolerance for workplace sexual harassment + India: In 1997, the Supreme Court established sexual harassment as a ”social problem of considerable magnitude” and a violation of the fundamental rights of women workers. It subsequently laid down guidelines “for the protection of these rights to fill the legislative vacuum”. + Hong Kong: In 1996, the Sex Discrimination Ordinance, which includes explicit provisions on sexual harassment in employment, came into force.

Laying down the rules

It is essential for companies to develop, communicate and then enforce specific policies against workplace harassment. According to the AWARE research, 66% of respondents were not aware of any policy in their organisation, whereas 50% stated that they were aware of a superior or colleague they could approach about the issue. “HR should make it very clear they have policies in place. One, it should be a written policy. Two, the policy should be clear, that people know if this happens, that will happen next. Three, the investigation needs to be done well,” Lim explains. One company that has strict regulations against workplace harassment is Crowne Plaza Changi Airport. “We adopt a zero tolerance stance regarding this issue and will not allow any employee to be subjected to any form of sexual harassment from colleagues, guests, clients or suppliers,” says James Lee, the hotel’s director of HR. At Crowne Plaza, employees know the proper policies in place with regards to this issue and can file a formal complaint with HR when an incident occurs, states Lee. Throughout the investigation, the complainant will be moved away from his or her work area or the alleged harasser’s work area. For serious cases, the alleged harasser can be suspended on full pay while investigations are going on. Moreover, if the harasser is found guilty,


issue 11.7

the person would have to undergo counselling or be subjected to disciplinary action which includes dismissal from work.

Creating awareness through training

Training is essential in creating awareness in this issue and Crowne Plaza ensures that all its employees are “aware and made to understand what workplace sexual harassment is,” says Lee. All employees undergo a one-hour sexual harassment awareness training within 28 days of joining the company. Also, two hours of mandatory refresher training is conducted each year while individual work departments run a 10-minute training twice a year. More companies are also sending their managers and employees to sexual harassment awareness workshops run by external trainers that focus on identifying harassment at work to handling grievances. AWARE is one of the organisations that have been regularly conducting such workshops since it started them in July 2010. Lim says on the average, three trainings are provided for each company, depending on employee numbers. Separate workshops can be conducted for managers and regular employees. Lim says the training can also be customised to harassment policies that a company already has in place, or AWARE gives recommendations on “what they should have, and train using those policies”. In general, the courses are four to five hours and focus on what constitutes sexual harassment and what the liabilities for a company are, from both reputational and legal perspectives. Workshops also teach employees how to be assertive, that it is okay to say “no” to a perpetrator, and in the case of harassment having occurred, how to collect evidence through recordings or even through journaling. Another essential component of the programme is role playing, during which managers are given a chance to practice their interviewing skills in grievance handling procedures. This is an essential skill as Lim says that some victims are more upset


by the interview process because they think that management doesn’t believe their claims. “I have had cases where the victim is more upset with management. This can also affect other employees. So, it is important that the interview of the issue is carried out very sensitively.” Government bodies also emphasise the importance of grievance handling procedures as part of a company’s HR policy. A spokesperson for The Tripartite Alliance for Fair Employment Practices (TAFEP) states: “Employers, regardless of size, should have grievance handling procedures in place to deal with employee complaints including those of sexual harassment. Also, all complaints should be handled seriously with proper investigations carried out while confidentiality should be observed at all times.” TAFEP also organises ‘Grievance Handling Workshops’ on a quarterly basis to help employers establish grievance handling mechanisms that are based on the principles of fair employment practices. Moreover, it released a Grievance Handling Handbook that offers practical tips and guides employers on a general grievance handling process.

“I have had cases where the victim is more upset with management. This can also affect other employees” Corinna Lim, Executive Director, AWARE

Tips for organisations to create a safe workplace + Have a clear definition of sexual harassment and have proper HR policies (for example, grievance procedures) regarding the do’s and the don’ts of workplace behaviour + Ensure procedures are known to all employees and they know at least one person to approach + Provide training for managers and employees regarding sexual harassment

issue 11.7


hr insider

Think fun, think


issue 11.7

hr insider

Internet giant Yahoo! is constantly on the lookout for bright, young minds to develop new and exciting products. With increasingly diverse groups of Generation Y and Z coming into the mix, keeping the company culture synonymous with fun is critical for business success by Shalini Shukla-Pandey

At a glance + Name of company: Yahoo! Southeast Asia + Total number of staff in Asia Pacific: 400 plus + Key HR focus areas: Talent acquisition, strengthening leadership, increasing employee engagement, talent development and supporting career development

issue 11.7


hr insider

Who’s who in HR?

“W Jessie Lim

Janis Neo

HR Director – SEA

HR Manager – Singapore & Malaysia

e make it our business to have fun at work every day,” says Jessie Lim, HR Director – Southeast Asia, Yahoo! In an organisation whose very name exudes fun, its corporate culture is no different. Fun and innovation are built into the fabric of every ‘Yahoo’s uniform’. Potential employees are even assessed for their ability to have fun when being considered for a role in the company, while fun in the workplace can also extend to pranks on colleagues. For instance, employees who go on leave for an extended period of time are prepared to come back to a totally different or unrecognisable desk!


Andrew Bellamy Talent Acquisition Manager – SEA

Katherina Howard Park HR Business Partner – Philippines & Vietnam

Benjamin Koh

Shermaine Toh

HR Business Partner – Indonesia/Compensation and Benefits, SEA

HR Analyst

Yahoo!’s core business is creating innovative products and content for consumers. Naturally, the company thrives on creativity and ingenuity. “We seek the innovations and ideas that can change the world,” says Lim. “A fun and relaxed environment is the perfect breeding ground for these innovations and ideas.” Now that Yahoo! is seeing an increasingly diverse group of generation Y and Z coming onto the scene, maintaining a fun and innovative workplace culture becomes even more important in keeping staff engaged. “These young people demand speed, creativity, flexibility, mobility and leadership opportunities. They know what they want, how and when to get it,” says Lim. “Our job is to facilitate this development and harness their energy. We give our employees the space to grow, research and discover independently, and develop at their own schedule.” Yahoo! offers opportunities for cross-functional/departmental networking. One such program the Singapore office launched within Southeast Asia is ‘SEA Innovation Day’, modelled on the corporate office’s ‘Yahoo! Hack Days’ whereby teams of cross-functional members take a Yahoo! product and ‘hack’ it – for the better. They have six months to work in teams of four on a specific Yahoo! product and at the end of six months, the winning team wins $5,000 plus resources internally to bring their idea to fruition. In Singapore, Yahoo! has another internal program – Fun@SEA in which teams organise monthly ‘Happy Hours’ (where everyone comes together and lets their hair down with games and great food), health and wellness classes (like yoga, Pilates and free health screens), and cultural assimilation classes, as a large proportion of employees are non-local.

Thinking purple

One way Yahoo! instils fun and innovation into its corporate culture is by placing great importance on the talent it hires. “A diverse and inclusive environment brings together a variety of talents, backgrounds and experiences, serving as a catalyst for new ideas and innovation within the


issue 11.7

hr insider

Purple heart organisation,” says Lim. She believes that these contributions and differences drive Yahoo!’s competitive business advantage, stimulate employees’ personal growth and ultimately create success for the company. Embedding new hires into Yahoo!’s culture and on-boarding them as quickly as possible allows the company to preserve this culture of fun and promote inclusiveness. This is achieved through several ways, including a comprehensive orientation session on an employee’s first day and a more in-depth business review and organisational overview two to three months thereafter. “We also do informal luncheons that get all the new hires for the month together for a casual get-together. The dialogue doesn’t stop there – we do regular check-ins with all staff on where they stand and what we can do to ‘move their needle’ over time,” says Lim.

Purple goes global

Yahoo!’s HR team operates across Southeast Asia – so cultural awareness and adjustment is paramount. Each person in the HR team operates with the mindset that no one market is the same, so listening with an open heart and mind takes precedence. It also helps that the HR team itself is made up of different nationalities and experiences, which helps with a diverse approach to decision-making. “We take into consideration cultural nuances, local practices, traditions and current market data and insights when formulating policies and programmes,” says Lim. “Our approach when implementing HR services in each market is a ‘localised’ one – with support and cost commitment from our global team; we truly need to put ourselves in their shoes and understand the effect of each implemented service.” One such example is the recent rollout of medical insurance coverage that HR localised to suit local practices, needs and market limits.

Being a premier digital media company, Yahoo! is committed to delivering safer online experiences for all, says Jessie Lim, HR Director – Southeast Asia, Yahoo!. “Yahoo! is a long-time industry leader on child safety and has made it a company priority to protect children online by creating tools for people to safeguard themselves and by supporting efforts to educate children, parents, adults and communities about safer online experiences,” she says. Yahoo! operates online safety resources globally that help inform parents, teachers and youth with simple strategies and advice on making smart and safer choices online. Yahoo! Safely ( is localised and available in 27 countries across 14 languages.

Stars in the making

At Yahoo!, staff are told that they own their own careers. Instead of having them rely on their managers for career direction, empowerment is encouraged. “Every Yahoo! should take ownership by articulating clearly what they envision their careers would look like in the span of short- to medium-term,” says Lim. “We constantly give priorities to our existing talents for lateral moves and promotions.” Yahoo! also has a robust learning and development strategy in place to instil leadership readiness within the entire Yahoo! family. ‘Leading Yahoos’ and ‘Managing Yahoos’ are two examples of leadership and management development programmes. ‘Leading Yahoos’ is targeted at issue 11.7


hr insider

“Once a Yahoo!, always a Yahoo!” Fresh out national service, Kenley Goh had nine months to spare before the start of university. He joined the marketing department of Yahoo! as a part of its B2B team. As an intern, Goh assisted the team not only in daily administrative matters but was also given an opportunity to assist with planning. One such project was a client summit held in Hanoi, Vietnam for which Goh and his team oversaw the entire logistical process of the event. “The event was a huge success and being part of the decision-making process enabled me to gain valuable insights in pulling off successful events of such a large scale,” he says. It is not all hard work and no play at Yahoo!, Goh adds. Impromptu Nerf gun fights among colleagues and Happy Hour Fridays are commonplace in the office. Once every three months or so, the entire department goes for teambuilding activities, sponsored by the company. “My most memorable memory of team-building was being on a yacht and sailing to one of Singapore’s outlying islands with the entire team,” Goh reminisced. “The unbreakable bonds and friendships formed within the company are things that will stick with me for life,” says Goh.

The quintessential Yahoo! experience A communications and new media undergraduate from the National University of Singapore (NUS), Ruth Sim began her six-month internship program with the communications department at Yahoo! in January this year. Yahoo! appealed to Sim the most out of a list of companies NUS offered due to its fast-paced yet fun environment. Sim was treated as part of the team, encouraged to own projects, and given the authority to see them through from start to finish. One such example was a press conference for MediaTek and Yahoo!, where Sim was in charge of event planning and logistics. She was given full responsibility for ensuring that the event ran smoothly. Other tasks Sim has handled include managing internal communications and events across Yahoo! offices in the APAC/SEA region, as well as assisting with communications and content writing. “As I come close to end my tenure here, I take back more than what I came with – friends, experience, memories, learning and most of all what Yahoo! made me,” Sim says. “There has not been a single day that I didn’t look forward to coming to work.”


issue 11.7

leaders, managers and individual contributors in the organisation. It is intended to create alignment across cascading business goals and build accountability for organisational performance and business results. The programme includes content on expectations through Yahoo!’s leadership standards, understanding company/functional goals and metrics and 360 degree insights into defining strengths, development areas and leadership development plans. ‘Managing Yahoos’ is targeted at new and newly-promoted managers and is designed to support the transition of employees into managerial roles. The programme content includes effective decision making, hiring skills, coaching and influence as well as an introduction to leadership standards. Yahoo! has also seen a breakthrough this year in its investments in emerging talents within Southeast Asia. “This The word ‘Yahoo!’ describes a legendary being in a group of high-energy book called Gulliver’s Travels written by Jonathan talents are singled out Swift. The internet giant’s founders self-deprecating and assimilated into a sense of humour wanted a unique yet fun name for high potential program the company – and they found the character a great which we have lined up mascot for the company. for them,” Lim explains. The word ‘Yahoo!’ also stands for ‘Yet Another “They will go through Hierarchical Officious Oracle’ – obviously another dig an intensive one-year at taking themselves too seriously. program which will expose them to multiple facets of the business beyond their scope, and at the same time, prepare them for future roles.” The company also places importance on developing the next generation of leaders through an internship programme. Interns at Yahoo! are not limited to fetching coffee or photocopying hundreds of papers for permanent staff. They are given ‘real work’ that develops and hones their skills (see boxouts). It’s not uncommon to see many interns coming back as full-time employees.

Did you know?

Recognising stars

Besides the usual monetary rewards which Yahoo! provides annually and quarterly, HR found that specific and public accolades work best in recognising employees, especially in Southeast Asia. “We have a local recognition program called ‘Caught Purple Handed’ whereby anyone within Southeast Asia can give out purple hands to someone who’s done a great job – big or small – and it’s accompanied by a small token of appreciation,” Lim says. “In the past, we’re given out cinema tickets, coffee vouchers and internal Yahoo! swags.”

hr insider

For group recognition awards within the region, Yahoo! launched ‘SuperHeroes’ in the first quarter of this year. This quarterly reward program pitches the best team projects against each other and is open to all staff in Southeast Asia. Each voter is given one vote and nominated teams go all out to rally for votes. The winning team gets a cash prize of $5,000 at the end of the quarter. To encourage employees to think global, an Yahoo’s revenue for Q1, 2011 annual global reward programme, ‘Super Star’, gathers individual nominations around the world and eventual winners are picked by executive-level staff. Every year, 20 odd winners are picked and flown to Yahoo!’s head office in California for a private meeting with the company’s CEO, Carol Bartz, and an all-expenses paid trip for the week.


HRiQ Human Capital Management Soluuon HRiQ Human Capital Management Soluuon gives you and your Organisaaon the tools & services needed to automate transacconal processes that will enhance produccvity, provide mely and criical informaaon for key decision making, thus effeccvely managing your Human Capital. It delivers the necessary framework to enable your Managers, HR Professionals, Execuuves and Employees to oppmise and enhance the talent within your organisaaon. HRiQ Core

Increase your operaaonal efficiency and reduce costs through automaaon of transacconal processes while maintaining a single version of the truth, compliant with local requirements.

HRiQ Talent

AAract, Measure, Reward and Develop your employees’ talent through a comprehensive and robust talent management soluuon built on a core HCM foundaaon to align with your business strategy.



issue 11.7




young guns It is important to understand what drives Generation Y to get the most out of them. HRM reveals these drivers and looks at how companies are attracting, developing and retaining talented younger workers By Priya de Langen


issue 11.7



hey are known by various monikers including ‘Millennials’, ‘iGeneration’ and ‘Echo boomers’ – but are most commonly referred to as ‘Generation Y’ or ‘Gen Y’. According to statistics, Gen Y, people aged between 15 and 29 years old, make up more than 25% of the world’s population. In addition, in countries such as China and India, more than 200 million people and more than 500 million people, respectively, are under the age of 25 years old. The comprehensive report, Generation Y and the Workplace Annual Report 2010 found that Gen Y is grabbing attention in the workplace for a number of reasons. While they are entering the job market in numbers, they do not make up for the gap left by many retiring Baby Boomers (those between the ages of 45-64). Also, they have brought about different social and business transformations from previous generations of employees. In a bid to win the talent war, organisations realise Gen Y, people aged between 15 and the potential of this group of employees and are 29 years old, make up more than actively seeking to recruit, engage and retain them.

Business case for engaging Gen Y


Gen Y employees, however, have a reputation for being needy and more demanding than their coworkers. In the book, Not Everyone Gets a of the world’s population Trophy: How to Manage Generation Y, the author says that as Gen Y employees “both disregard authority figures and yet demand a great deal of them”, this makes them difficult to manage. However, he also states that if managers want “high performance out of this generation” they “better commit to high-maintenance management”. Employers affirm that this group of young workers have many key qualities that make them assets to organisations. However, they advise that employers must also take their time to understand this new breed of employees. Devyani Vaishampayan, Global HR Director of AET Tankers, says: “What we see as Gen Y as a small population now, in issue 11.7



Generations in numbers (in 2009)

about 10 years’ time is going to be more than half of your employee base. If you don’t take the effort to understand and prepare for that, your Gen Y - 15-29 years 1,723,911,077 organisation is not going to be ready in really Gen x - 30-44 years 1,442,951,791 engaging and retaining your employees.” Baby Boomers - 45 -64 years 1,233,836,150 Gen Y employees are known to be tech-savvy, Traditionalists - 65-74 years 316,330,067 care for a work-life balance, are results-oriented, highly collaborative as team-players as well as Source: U.S. Census Bureau, International Data Base good at multi-tasking. Moreover, they want their work to be meaningful. “I think they are not hung up about titles and promotion because it is important for them that whatever they do is meaningful. They are very passionate about it and engagement levels can be high,” notes Vaishampayan. Moreover, she says that Gen Y employees are also “globally savvy which is a big strength for organisations which are increasingly getting international”. Employers also think that they are innovative and highly creative. Suresh Nair, Director and Executive Coach of CELLS Management, says that this group of employees are high performers. “The outcome of work can be of very high quality. They are creative and always looking at different ways to do things, this will help companies to be productive and relevant.” Population


% of population of world 25.47 21.32 18.56 4.67

Retaining young employees

Among the different generations of employees, Gen Y are recognised for being interested in moving to find the right job. The study, Kelly Global Workforce: The Evolving Workforce found that 85% of Gen Y participants stated that they would move to find the right job. With such high mobility, organisations are using various ways to engage their Gen Y employees in order to manage the expectations of these workers. Retail company, Robinsons & Co. has several programmes to engage its young workforce. Chee Nian Tze, General Manager, Group Human Resources of Robinsons & Co. states: “We start by ensuring we have a rigorous induction programme to make newcomers feel at home as soon as possible. We also engage the Gen Y employees on social front.” The company has various planned activities (such as teambuilding) so that “they feel that they are part of the team”. As Gen Y employees like to know a reason before carrying out tasks, she says the company offers various communication platforms to “voice their opinions” as well as for them “to understand the company’s business directions and policies”. Nair states that his consultancy uses a good “growth policy” to retain young employees. “To keep and retain Gen Y employees, you have to showcase their growth path in the organisation and what is it in for them. This will yield good attitude, loyalty and positive vibrations at the workplace.” Moreover, CELLS conducts quarterly appraisals and provides constant feedback on performance as well as incentives for high performance. Also,


issue 11.7


Nair has a weekly reflection and journaling session for his team in India, during which employees get to write about their performance and the experience of their learning. Nair answers each e-journal entry personally to offer advice, which helps the employees reflect, learn and grow in their performances. However, some experts state that besides adopting strategies to engage Gen Y employees, companies should look at their fundamental recruitment strategies. Vaishampayan of AET Tankers says that organisations need to accept that employees will be staying a shorter time and adopt cost-effective recruitment strategies. “Organisations need to have more nimble or costeffective ways of recruiting so that they are not investing too much money bringing in people and out of the organisation.” She also mentions that organisations should involve Gen Y workers in a “variety of work and projects within the organisation that will keep them for a longer time, than somebody who comes in assuming that they will be doing the same job for the next five years”.

Creating a multi-generational exchange

“What we see as Gen Y as a small population now, in about 10 years’ time, it is going to be more than half of your employee base” Devyani Vaishampayan, Global HR Director, AET Tankers

Spot the Gen Y employee

Employers say that Gen Y employees need to learn to work with other generations, and companies are ensuring that there is a cross generational exchange at their workplaces. + Collaborative “We strive to create a culture that is generation + Tech-savvy friendly and we have social programmes that cater to the + Likes flexible working conditions interest of different generations,” says Robinsons’ Chee. + Not afraid to voice their opinions “We also try to create opportunity for the different + Achievement or goal-oriented generations to work together on projects.” + Have high expectations of themselves and Gen Y employees too can do their part to their employers collaborate with older workers, and Nair says that they + Seek meaning in their work should seek a mentor or coach to help them “in the finer points of work and life”. He also believes they should work through face-to-face interaction instead of through technical gadgets. Moreover, he states that Gen Y should “learn to build their EQ skills, which is very important both in life and at work.” Some experts believe that companies should not become focused on just ‘generational thinking’ but should be willing to engage workers of all generations. Anu Sarkar, Regional Lead of Diversity (APAC) at Deutsche Bank says that “organisations should remember that in their focus to keep talking about Gen Y, they should not be excluding other generations”. “When organisations design their diversity strategy, they should look at how to engage people from all generations. Also, each generation of workers gives you the most in that point of time,” says Sarkar, who concludes that it is “important for organisations to create a culture of ageless thinking”.

issue 11.7


corporate learning case study

The Land Transport Authority believes in providing its employees with a challenging but rewarding career path. HRM examines how it uses training and development to help them achieve both personal and organisational goals By Sumathi V Selvaretnam

Building a

training W

ith a train arriving every minute during peak hour, Singapore’s efficient public transport system is the envy of many countries. Orchestrating this well-oiled machine is the Land Transport Authority (LTA), which is responsible for spearheading land transport developments across the island. Building a world-class transport system requires LTA employees to be at the forefront of the latest developments in their field, says Lee Jin Hwui, Manager, Learning and Development, HR Development Division, LTA. Training and development programmes play a critical role in keeping employees up-to-speed and are also tied closely to employee engagement, says Lee. For example, if employee surveys reveal a need for better communication, training programmes will include this attribute in their agenda. “We then measure results through communication scores and retention rates,” Lee says.

Building technical competencies

LTA Ambassador Programme participants examining a model of a tunnel boring machine


issue 11.7

In 2008, the LTA unveiled the Land Transport Masterplan, which kicked off a series of projects such as the Marina Coastal Expressway, underground Downtown line and widening of existing roads. These led to a surge in demand for new talent and capabilities, says Lee. The LTA subsequently ramped up its recruitment efforts, hiring more technicians and engineers. Newly hired employees had to rapidly develop the technical skills required to perform their jobs effectively. To achieve this, Lee says LTA sent them on various training programmes to build their functional capabilities. Engineers, for example, learnt about the design and supervision of deep tunneling and excavation projects – an important stage in the development of new rail networks. Some of these Courses are run at the LTA Academy located at its headquarters along Hampshire Road. The academy also runs professional

corporate learning case study

roadmap programmes in areas such as road safety engineering, transit architecture design and urban transport management.

Training for long-term retention

While building technical competencies can help employees become more efficient at work, it is the development of core competencies such as leadership, strategic thinking and effective communication that encourages them to stay long-term, says Lee. The Staff Development Framework at the LTA helps to identify what courses employees should undertake based on their roles and designations. All employees also have an electronic training roadmap that tracks the learning programmes that they need to complete in order to meet required competencies. The LTA believes in inculcating its core principles in employees from day one, and the LTA Ambassador programme is a two-day induction programme that educates employees about the rationale behind major transport policies like Electronic Road Pricing or the need for a Certificate of Entitlement to purchase a car. Some of these policies have been controversial. “We give them the facts so that they can engage intelligently in discussions with the public,” Lee says. Deputy directors enrolled in the Advanced Management Development Programme study modules on strategic leadership and public policy. They learn the key principles of developing public policies and learn how to communicate their ideas to stakeholders. “The decisions that they make impact people so we equip them with the basic knowledge on how to go about crafting policies,” Lee says. Due to the nature of the transport industry, the talent base at the LTA is largely made up of engineers. “However, the best technical specialists might not have the best leadership skills,” Lee says. This is where options such as the Management Development Programme help, equipping them with skills in areas such as leadership, performance management and interviewing skills. “We also use real-life case studies from within the LTA,” he says. Managerial

New employees on a site visit

“When employees share their own expertise, they have the opportunity to apply their knowledge and experience in a different setting. This widens their horizon and allows them to continuously broaden the scope of their expertise” Lee Jin Hwui, Manager, Learning and Development, HR Development Division, Land Transport Authority

issue 11.7


corporate learning case study

In Brief + Name of organisation: Land Transport Authority + Employees: More than 4,200 + Core areas of specialisation: Land transport policies and infrastructure + Current training priorities: Capability building and leadership development + Training budget: Close to 2% of annual payroll. This is primarily for external programmes. Most functional programmes are conducted in-house and hence do not require any outward expenditure + Training methods: Classroom-based lectures and facilitations, case studies, e-learning, experiential learning, site visits, learning festivals, on-the-job training

forums are also held every quarter to keep staff informed about the latest people management strategies and best practices.

Paving a second career

An ageing workforce is a challenge for many organisations in Singapore. In 2012, new legislation will make it mandatory for companies to offer reemployment to workers who have reached the retirement age of 62. More than 50% of LTA employees are mature-aged workers aged 40 years and above and 15% of employees have been with the organisation for more than 20 years. The LTA has been investing in training and development programmes to help older workers forge a second career in the organisation. The Continuing Education Scheme for Mature Officers, for example, encourages employees to upgrade their professional skills through academic certification and qualification programmes. A worker who has spent most of their career involved in construction might choose to take on less physically taxing work like maintenance checks as they get older, explains Lee.

Knowledge sharing

LTA employees regularly attend overseas conferences to keep abreast of the latest developments in land transport. They are also sent on regular study trips to learn more about the transport systems and policies in countries such as the United States, United Kingdom, Sweden, Germany and China. “These overseas conferences cover topics which are not readily available in local conferences,” Lee says. As Singapore’s own transport system is viewed as a model of success by many countries, LTA employees are also frequently sought after for consulting stints overseas, says Lee. “When employees share their own expertise, they have the Employees observing excavation works at an underground MRT station opportunity to apply their knowledge and experience in a different setting. This widens their horizon and allows them to continuously broaden the scope of their expertise.” Supervisors and managers at LTA double up as coaches and trainers for employees. Some of them also share their expertise at the LTA Academy. Many countries send their transport professionals to the academy to learn about land transport development, planning and management. To ensure that standards are met, all internal trainers are required to attain a Workforce Skills Qualifications Advanced Certificate in Training and Assessment. “Teaching is a good way for people to learn themselves,” Lee says.


issue 11.7

Nomination Entries Now Open


aw ard s2 012 We Support Great HR:





For nine consecutive years, the HRM Awards have celebrated HR’s top people, initiatives and strategies along with those organisations practicing them. Nomination entries are now open and encouraged for the 2012 HRM Awards. Help us support great HR now by entering your nominations at:

mice feature

Basking in

Bali A

n exotic destination, Bali is renowned for its great beaches, warm hospitality, and fun great outdoor activities. Organisations are increasingly sending their employees to Bali for meetings, incentives, and team-building activities. “Bali’s natural beauty offers many exciting and diverse opportunities for MICE activities. Moreover, it has the infrastructure to support MICE activities, be it for small or large groups,” says Gerald Hendrick, Head of Business Development, Bonvo Travel. Numerous hotels, resorts and villas in the island such as Karma Kandara, St. Regis, and Nusa Dua Beach Hotel & Spa offer attractive corporate incentive packages, teambuilding programmes and well-appointed meeting facilities for conferences and seminars. Karma Kandara offers various MICE programmes for companies. For conferences, organisations can choose from a half or full day package which


issue 11.7

comprises of lunch and coffee break menus. Also, different meeting and banqueting areas such as the Grand Cliff Front Residence and the renowned di Mare Restaurant can accommodate 40 and 80 guests, respectively, for a cocktail reception. Furthermore, the villa resort provides Family Programs, which will be useful for organisations that would like to conduct a company family day for employees. Companies that are interested in corporate team building have a variety of programmes to choose from in Bali. Hendrick from Bonvo Travel says that his company organises customised programmes suited to an organisation’s needs. “We would usually work closely with the group organisers to find out their requirements in order to develop creative events that match their needs and wants. Activities can revolve around the country’s unique culture and heritage or its natural surroundings,” he says. Bonvo Travel organises activities such as ‘a la Amazing Race’ for which teams work together to “complete challenges around the island.” In another programme, teams are taught to play traditional Balinese musical instruments and they have to work together to create a symphony. The teams put up a collective performance at the end of the day. One other unique activity that teams are involved in is assembling bikes, which will be “donated to needy homes or to village children that their organisation adopts.” Bali is also a great place to experience art and culture as many Balinese arts and dance festivals are held throughout the year. The famous Kecak Dance can be viewed at sunset at the coastal location of Uluwatu. Some 150 male performers sit in a circular group to chant and dance, portraying characters from a famous Hindu mythology, Ramayana, for the audience.

mice profile The Beverly Hills Bali

The Beverly Hills Bali

Where dreams transpire... The Beverly Hills Bali Description

Embracing two hectares of precious sub-tropical terrain on Bali’s southern peninsular, The Beverly Hills Bali is an exclusive property elevated high to take in distant ocean views and the iconic Garuda Wisnu Kencana statue. A collection of 25 luxury villa compounds are set within a garden landscape redefining the sense of harmony experienced in a traditional Balinese village. Designed to anticipate the needs of seasoned travellers and their families, the property is a private retreat to escape the complexities of a demanding metropolitan lifestyle.

One Bedroom Villa (Maximum Occupancy: 2 Adults)

The One Bedroom Villa is a private sanctuary perfect for honeymooners or couples choosing to spend some quality time alone together. Set within an exotic garden compound complete with a generous sized swimming pool and Balinese gazebo, this luxurious villa features all mandatory home comforts and is reflective of a tropical lifestyle.

Two Bedroom Villa (Maximum Occupancy: 4 Adults / 2 Adults & 2 Children)

Designed to accommodate the needs of a family unit travelling together or four adult friends, the Two Bedroom Villa is resplendent of a tropical home nestled within a garden compound. The sheer space of this villa ensures that privacy and comfort are not compromised with both bedroom suites separated by an integrated living, dining and kitchen environment.

Three Bedroom Villa (Maximum Occupancy: 6 Adults / 2 Adults & 4 Children / 4 Adults & 2 Children)

Inspired by the dramatic beauty of the surrounding landscape, the Three Bedroom Villa is a modern interpretation of a tropical home. It ultimately caters for an extended family group or six adults choosing to travel together. Set within an immaculate garden compound with a manicured lawn and species of indigenous flora, this luxury two storey villa is a charming haven to unwind and recharge depleted energy levels. A generous sized swimming pool and traditional gazebo complement the Balinese concept of healthy outdoor living.

Villa’s Facilities:

AC, IDD Telephone, Large Screen Flat TV, Satellite Channels, Personal Electronic Safe, Generous Bathtub, Exclusive Bathroom Amenities, Bathrobes, Slippers, Hairdryer, Fully Equipped Kitchen, Coffee/Tea Maker, Maxi Bar, Traditional Balinese Gazebo, Private Swimming Pool, Tropical Garden Compound, Garden Swing, Massage Beds


20 minutes from Ngurah Rai International Airport, 20 minutes from Central Kuta, 25 minutes from Seminyak, 20 minutes from Nusa Dua Beach, 20 minutes from Jimbaran Bay, 90 minutes from Ubud

+ The Beverly Hills Bali Jl. Goa Gong, Banjar Shanti Karya Jimbaran 80362, Bali – Indonesia + Tel: +62 361 8481 800 + Fax: +62 361 8481 888 + Email: reservation@ + Website: issue 11.7



Going mobile – the way forward for businesses


n the introduction to the book, Managing the Mobile Workforce: Leading, Building, and Sustaining Virtual Teams, there is a line which states: “In a global market for talent, the best employees can work anywhere.” This book highlights that workforces around the globe are becoming increasingly mobile and it is not just a trend. In fact, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC), the number of mobile workers worldwide will surpass one billion by 2011. The book is aimed at executives and managers at all levels informing them about the significance of hiring, engaging and retaining a mobile workforce. The authors, David Clemons and Michael Kroth have interviewed 39 high-level executives from small organisations to global businesses such as Deloitte, Samsung and LEGO and thought leaders such as like Joel Barker and Stephen M. R. Covey.


issue 11.7

The book comprises case studies of companies that have been successfully sustaining a mobile workforce. In one case study, Sharon Allen, Deloitte’s chairman states that her team, from her executive assistant to her speechwriter work out of their home offices and report to her remotely. The organisation also utilises a system called mass career customisation where employees can choose when and where they would like to work with reduced work hours. The book also emphasises several issues that managers need to know in order to maintain a productive mobile team such as strategies to manage the performance of Managing the Mobile Workforce: Leading, Building, and Sustaining Virtual Teams mobile workers as well as how Written by: David Clemons & Michael Kroth trust helps manager and Published by: The McGraw-Hill Companies employees work together Recommended price: S$44.95 incl. GST over distances.

At a Glance

talent ladder Swapna Arun

Senior Recruiter, Human Resources, Asia Pacific and Japan, Informatica S.E.A.

Darke Mohamed Sani Group Chief Human Resources Officer, Axiata Group Bhd

Swapna Arun has taken up her new role as Senior Recruiter at Informatica where she will manage recruitment for Asia Pacific and Japan (APJ). She has had six years of recruiting experience across the APJ region. One of the companies she has worked with is Apple Asia, where she was tasked to set up its call centre operations in Singapore, hiring nearly 150 employees in the process. “I am blessed to be part of a great team which promotes employee values and so on. Working hand-in-hand with the APJ HR Director has also taught me to become a better HR professional. Informatica, a world leader in Data Integration is growing in the region and I am looking forward to new successes for both the organisation and myself!” Darke Mohamed Sani has been appointed as the Group Chief Human Resources Officer for the Axiata Group. Darke has had over 25 years of experience both in Malaysia and in the region, in the telecommunication and IT industry and, most recently, HR consulting. His regional experience as Managing Director of ASEAN and India for Apple, Director of Operations, ASEAN for Digital Equipment Corporation (now part of Hewlett-Packard) as well as his experience as a director in an HR consulting firm makes him an excellent business partner to top management teams across the Group. Dato’ Sri Jamaludin Ibrahim, President and Group Chief Executive of Axiata said having an experienced business leader as the company’s HR head is quite unique and will serve as a competitive differentiator. C








KS Jamestin

Director – HR, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd

K S Jamestin has recently taken charge as Director – HR at Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd (ONGC). He has over three and a half decades of multifaceted experience in HR development, project management, business development, operation and maintenance of oil field installations, engineering, design and instrumentation. Jamestin started his career in ONGC in 1977 as a Graduate Trainee, and has since worked in most work centres of ONGC like Mumbai Offshore, Assam, Southern Sector, Dehradun and the corporate headquarters. With his management training in Finance, established empathy towards employee issues, wide spanning exposure and experience in all types of ONGC’s activities like Offshore & Onshore, HR Development and Employee Relations, IR and Project Management, Jamestin will now steer all HR functions on the board of ONGC. issue 11.7


in person


Nian Tze

General Manager, Group Human Resources, Robinsons Group of Companies Years in HR? 20 years… Why HR? I enjoy the HR function as I love the complexity of managing human relationships. Why Robinsons? It’s an iconic institution that has been around for more than 150 years and yet has managed to stay relevant and successful through it all. More importantly, it has a long established people culture, great respect for employees and I love the vibrancy of retail. There is never a dull moment! Biggest achievement? The best is yet to be but so far, I’ve felt a great sense of achievement every time I’ve


issue 11.7

seen my staff become successful in life, especially those who were not considered high performers but because of our coaching and development intervention plans, they flourished in their careers and went on to achieve bigger things in life. Family? My father, sister and brother-in-law are close; no matter how busy we are, we always make sure we have at least one holiday together. Every weekend, we also make it a point to exercise together. What happens after hours? I generally divide my time into three portions: quality time with family, chill out time with friends, time for charity/ social work.

talent challenge

Walking the talk Recount a time when setting a positive example had the most beneficial impact on people you worked with As the pioneer batch of leaders who joined Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) during its start-up phase, we encountered difficult times, as we had Jaclyn Lee to build the University totally from scratch and attract top students and faculty to join Senior Director, HR, a brand new setup with no reputation. Singapore University of Technology & I remember going to students’ houses to deliver offer letters with my Provost Design over the weekend, speaking to concerned parents during our Saturday events, spending many an evening with potential faculty members over dinner to persuade them to join SUTD, working with very limited resources to start the university going, as well as rolling up our sleeves to put new systems in place. All these actions were excellent examples to our younger staff of our pioneering spirit, our willingness to sacrifice, and our courage in doing things out of the box. They watched and learned from our actions as leaders in difficult situations. As a result of all these efforts, we have fantastic teamwork now within the university as we show to our people that all things are possible with courage and determination.

Nelson Lee

At one company I joined, the HR team was fragmented – each team supported one division and there was no cooperation and sharing among the HR teams in different offices. Upon joining, I set out to share and build the idea of “One HR”, using Dave Ulrich’s model of the four roles of HR – Administrative Expert, Change Agent, Employee Champion and Strategic Partner. A vision and action plan was mapped out for my team of 20 HR business partners. Under my coaching and guidance, we strived and worked towards unifying the HR department. Our efforts started to pay off and the 12 Managing Directors and General Managers began to trust and respect HR. The HR team was appreciated and rewarded accordingly for their effects and dedication. After three years of hard work and leading by example, the HR team is now unified, works together, trusts each other and believes in “One HR”. I was recognised for the efforts and positive impact I made on the HR team and awarded the Leading HR Leader Award in 2010 by Singapore Human Resource Institute.

Regional Head – Regional HR Office, Sime Darby

Virendra Shelar

I remember a case when we were conducting leadership training in my previous organisation. Senior managers in the organisation as well as their subordinates were Head of Recruitment asked to attend this program. & Development – AMEA, Sony Electronics I found that when these senior managers exhibited leadership behaviour, their Asia Pacific subordinates followed. For example, when the managers started giving timely feedback and managed their emotions well, their subordinates started doing the same with their respective team. When we compared the achievements of one department against another, it was very evident that the success of the department was strongly linked to how the manager of that particular department behaved. His subordinates exhibited the same behaviour down the line, and that determined their success. To bring more cooperation into the different teams, we transferred managers from one manufacturing plant to another and found that it was then easy to move engineers from one plant to another as well. This type of movement was previously never acceptable. This exchange of talents within the organisation led to more cooperation and heightened team spirit. issue 11.7


twenty-four seven 1:00pm Back to work. I start working on

Lawrence Spykerman

reports and collate data from production and quality assurance. I then contact managers in charge of the various departments to go through any variances on the output and any shortages on manpower and hiring.

Group Accounts and Human Resources Manager, Stamplas Industries

3:00pm I’m also tasked with verifying

8:00am Just stepped into the office. I have my usual breakfast at the nearby factory canteen with the production manager, Sainar Badron.

9:00am After a well-needed morning sugar boost, I read emails and follow up on outstanding matters regarding Finance and HR. I also have a short meeting with my Accounts and HR staff on work that needs to be attended to.

10:00am It’s now time for a quick daily operational meeting via teleconferencing.


issue 11.7

I specifically look into any HR issues that need my urgent attention.

10:45am Alongside HR, I’m also responsible for finance. I review all admin and accounts-related documents and check the daily cash flow statement.

12.00pm Lunch normally happens with my other fellow colleagues at Causeway Point. There is a variety of food at the Banquet foodcourt but the Mutton Briyani is my all-time favourite dish and is even comparable with the one at Northpoint!

staff training records and approving training (internal, on-the-job-training and external) programmes. I identify staff that require further upgrading and training. This is also an ideal time to engage in a teleconference with our Malaysia plant to discuss other HR matters and to get updates on manpower planning there.

4:30pm I proceed to prepare a “to-do-list” for tomorrow and future weeks, and clear any outstanding emails. I also take time to approve payment for vendors and check on debtor reports.

5:30pm Clock out time – only when there are no urgent matters to attend to!


talent feature

Rising prominence of women in businesses More women are entering the workforce and seizing new opportunities to advance their careers. Annie Yap, Managing Director of AYP Associates provides some tips on what HR can do to create a progressive work environment for female employees



Managing Director, AYP Associates


n recent years, we have borne witness to the rising trend of women joining or returning to the workforce, with an increasing number gaining prominence due to their entrepreneurial stints. Slowly, but surely, Singaporean women are finding it second nature to balance both their traditional and modern-day roles in the economy, against the backdrop of the entrenched patriarchal and Confucian temperament of Singapore society. While there is no silver bullet to wooing more women back into the workforce or encouraging entrepreneurial pursuits of women, the Government’s comprehensive strategies such as flexible working options, innovative recruitment and job matching services as well as increasing childcare support have yielded positive results. Opportunities for women have increased and progressively, private sector organisations have come to recognise the comparative advantages which women bring to the table, believed to have stemmed

from specific gender traits such as empathy and personal touch. This prospect is cause for cheer, but there remains much more to be done. In certain business organisations and industries, the proverbial glass ceiling appears to have survived the paradigm shift, continuing to impede the career progression of some working women. To catalyse the emergence of more women entrepreneurs and propel more women into senior level positions, businesses must be prepared to regard the economic empowerment of women a worthy goal in itself and do away with the glass ceiling, notwithstanding any paternalistic convention. Particularly, the onus is on the HR personnel to ensure that all company policies and programmes are not discriminatory against female employees, and that this corporate philosophy permeates all levels and all activities, such as hiring, compensation and terminations. Therein lies the long-standing fact that many companies are intrinsically concerned about the void

expected to be left behind by female employees going on maternity leave. In this respect, HR personnel have an imperative role to play in tackling this stigma against married female employees and addressing this major employer concern. HR managers should take the lead in the company, devising plans delineating what could be done to cope with the lack of manpower, in a forward-looking manner. Solutions such as temporary placements and telecommuting arrangements for female employees should be in the pipeline prior to their maternity leave. With all bases covered, companies will have fewer qualms regarding the employment of married women. Recently, the Association of Women for Action and Research (AWARE) has called for paternal leave to be legislated and maternal leave to be made transferable from the mother to the father. If this appeal is heeded, it would demonstrate that the Government is willing to be at the forefront of championing women’s rights. A trickle-down effect at the business level will likely follow, diminishing negative gender stereotypes and effecting the long-awaited change required in the employment landscape of women. In summary, with Singaporean women becoming more highly educated and skilled, it is of paramount importance that organisations proactively spearhead efficacious policies to retain and empower their female talents. + Email: issue 11.7


executive appointments


issue 11.7

executive appointments

GLOBAL EXPERIENCE. LOCAL EXPERTISE. Michael Page Human Resources. Providing expert career advice to the Singapore market for more than 15 years.

HR Business Partner

AVP HR – Business Partner

Global MNC | Employer of choice

Business advisory role | Possibility to rotate within the HR team

We are working with a MNC that prides itself on being at the forefront of technology. They are innovative market leaders and have been recruiting the best minds in the industry. There is now an opening for a driven HR professional to join their team.

Our client is an established financial services organisation with an extensive network in South East Asia. They have experienced strong growth and are presently looking to engage a business partner to support the technology business.

This role will take on the full spectrum of HR responsibilities for our client’s Singapore office. Setting in place HR best practices, you will take on projects such benchmarking exercises, identifying and developing high potential employees within the organisation and bringing the HR system up to date with a model suitable for the Asian landscape.

This is a full spectrum generalist role, supporting and providing timely advice to the technology office. You will lead and manage key strategic initiatives associated with organisational development through directing business leaders in terms of planning and meeting business strategies.

We are looking for a candidate with at least five years’ experience in generalist HR. Working knowledge of the local laws in Singapore is essential, whilst a comfortable foundation in compensation and benefits is preferred. An excellent career path awaits the successful applicant.

The successful applicant will have over five years’ experience in the generalist HR function, with sound talent management exposure. Possessing strong influencing and communication skills towards senior management, you will also display the ability to drive consensus in decision making and problem solving. Applicants with an IT or banking background are preferred.

Contact Lianna Tian for further information. Ref: H875700

Contact Cherry Wu for further information. Ref: H873330

Training Manager – Asia

Talent Acquisition, Senior Manager

Newly created regional role | Industry leader

Specialist recruitment/business partnering role | Global MNC

Our client is a leading consultancy with offices in all the main business centres globally and are looking to recruit an experienced and dynamic trainer to join their team of driven sales individuals.

Our client is one of the world’s leading organisations in the media industry, renowned for their brand and company culture. They are looking for a Senior Talent Acquisition Manager with a proven track record and the ability to advise/ coach management with their recruitment needs.

The successful candidate will partner the business in offices around Asia including Hong Kong, China, Japan, India, Malaysia and Singapore. As the Asia Training Manager, you will be responsible for providing face-to-face training (technical and soft skills) to the business. You will be responsible for organising and managing the learning requirements across the region as directed by the Regional Head of Learning & Development. The successful candidate will be able to build relationships and influence effectively. They will have an Adult Learning or Learning and Development degree, Diploma or Certificate IV, with four years’ experience training and developing sales individuals, and two years leading a team. Experience in sales training and designing training materials will be an asset, as will the ability to speak Mandarin.

Reporting to the Head of HR, this is a specialist recruitment role whose main responsibilities are to recruit across all functions within the organisation. You will be responsible for the full lifecycle of recruiting and also be an advisory point of contact for the various heads of business. You must possess at least five years’ recruitment experience, preferably in an agency, as a strong local network is essential for this role. You will also have a strong business acumen, as another key component of the role is that of an advisor to management. Foreigners with local experience are welcome to apply. Contact Ling Quek for further information. Ref: H866000

Contact Audrey Neo or Cherry Wu for further information. Ref: H873220

To apply for any of the above positions, please go to quoting the reference number or contact the relevant consultant on +65 6533 2777 for further details.

issue 11.7

#11636 Licence No: B565705A Business Registration No: 99804751N

Michael Page Human Resources sets the benchmark in specialist recruitment with a quality of service that is second to none. As part of Michael Page International, we can draw on more than 30 years of global recruitment experience and the resources of 148 offices across 32 countries.


executive appointments

HUDSON IS CELEBRATING 15 YEARS of successful partnership with our clients and candidates in Singapore. 15 years of positive impact on the performance of top companies and talented individuals by finding the best fit for them.


With your support, we have evolved, grown and emerged as Singapore’s premier Recruitment Service Provider. And through each year, we better understand your needs and continuously strive to serve you better. Continue to grow and improve with us. Contact our HR specialists at 6339 0355: GEORGIE CHONG MAUREEN HO

HR DIRECTOR, SOUTH EAST ASIA US Fortune 500 Company Global Diversified Industrial Business Challenging and Dynamic Environment A hugely diversified industrial organization, our client is seeking a dynamic and experienced HR professional to support the growth in the SEA region. Reporting to the Regional Business Head, you are responsible for the full spectrum of HR functions leveraging on country HR support. You provide advisory and implement HR strategies focusing on Talent and Leadership Development, Total Rewards, Employee Engagement and Relations for the region. Degree qualified, you have a minimum of 10 years of HR generalist experience including 3 years in a people management capacity. You have a strong knowledge of operating in the SEA region in an engineering or industrial environment. You possess good conceptualization and project management skills, and have exceptional communication and influencing skills. Contact Maureen Ho quoting HRMP/31137/MH.

SENIOR HR MANAGER Leading Player in the Transportation Sector Diverse and Service-Oriented Culture Singapore Operation A challenging opportunity has arisen for an experienced and mature HR professional to join one of the global companies in the transportation sector. Reporting to the Vice President of Human Resources and partnering senior Business Leaders, you will lead and execute HR strategies for Singapore. You will serve as advisor and change facilitator to the business, initiate, design and implement HR programs, and translate objectives into HR deliverables. You are degree qualified with minimum 12 years of solid hands-on and progressive HR generalist experience within MNCs. You are a strategist and hands-on operator with demonstrated leadership capability, and experience in managing HR operations. An excellent communicator, you possess exceptional interpersonal and influencing skills, and ability to work in a service and people oriented environment. Contact Maureen Ho quoting HRMP/30877/MH.

To apply please enter the relevant reference number in the ‘Job ref number/keyword’ section of Alternatively, email your resume to quoting the relevant reference number.

HRM_2p_05.indd 1-2


issue 11.7

executive appointments

REGIONAL HR OPERATIONS MANAGER Global MNC Career Growth Prospects Regional Responsibility

IN-HOUSE RECRUITERS NEEDED! Global and Leading MNCs Diversified Industry Players Exciting and Challenging Roles

An opportunity has arisen for a qualified professional to join the APAC HR operations team that constantly seeks to maintain the highest level of HR service delivery for the region.

Well known industry leaders, our clients have urgent requirements for highly resourceful and dynamic Recruiters to play key and leading roles in their talent acquisition quests.

You are responsible for HR operational matters and ensuring an effective and efficient HR service delivery including but not limited to Vendor Management and Compliance, Six Sigma service improvement plans and HR workflow and processes. You will also be involved in HR projects design and management, and implementation across the region.

As subject matter expert, you are responsible in delivering high quality staffing service to the business. Partnering with senior management and hiring managers to identify and develop staffing strategies and requirements, you will perform end to end recruitment activities and guide stakeholders through the entire selection process.

Degree qualified, you have at least 8 years of HR operations experience working in a dynamic and fast-paced MNC environment. You possess in-depth operational HR experience and have worked in highly matrix environments. With strong leadership skills, you are customer-oriented, detailed-minded with a strong sense of urgency and have creative problem solving skills. Contact Maureen Ho quoting HRMP/31139/MH.

Degree qualified, you have at least 5 years experience in end to end recruitment within a corporate environment. You are an expert in full lifecycle recruitment activities preferably with high volume recruitment and agency experience. Capability in dealing with ambiguity and operating in a dynamic environment is desired. You possess excellent project management, interpersonal and communication skills, and demonstrated stakeholder management capability. Contact Maureen Ho quoting HRMP/30395A/MH.

6/14/2011 12:51:50 PM

issue 11.7


executive appointments

Returning the Human to Resourcing

Regional L&D Manager

Compensation Consulting Senior Leader

HR Business Partner

Global Leader

Global Consulting Firm Financial Services Sector China / Hong Kong-Based

Premier Bank

This premier global human capital consulting firm specializes in compensation consulting for financial services sector.

This premier bank has a strong global franchise and has recorded impressive business growth in the region.

Reporting to the Asia Pacific Head of Financial Services Practice, you will build the compensation practice and execute consulting services for major international or regional financial services companies in the region. Consulting services cover market surveys, valuation services, compensation consulting (covering executive, equity, sales and employee compensation) and analytic services. You will deliver excellent services & solutions to existing clients and continuously originate new clients.

Reporting to Senior HR Leader, you will provide HR advice and services to the Support Function Group (including Technology, Operations and Finance). You will enhance functional performance through appropriate advice and facilitation of robust and integrated people management tools and processes. You will play a diverse role covering performance management, reward and talent management so as to align people objectives with business strategies.

Degree qualified, you will have at least 10 – 15 years of experience gained in a major human capital consulting firm with a strong focus on financial services sector or a major financial institution. With strong business development, execution and consulting skills, you are entrepreneurial, driven and commercial in your approach.

Degree qualified, you will have at least 10 years experience gained in a major MNC or bank, including few years covering the support functions. You are proactive, mature, credible and tenacious. You are able to influence priorities and build relationship at all levels.

To apply, please submit your resume to Adnan Atan at, quoting the job title and reference number AA2992\HRM, or call (65) 6333 8530 for more details.

To apply, please submit your resume to Adnan Atan at, quoting the job title and reference number AA3005\HRM, or call (65) 6333 8530 for more details.

High Visibility Role Salary circa S$120k - S$140k + variable bonus Our client is an established multinational in the technology services and solutions industry. Due to aggressive expansion, there is now an opportunity for a high caliber HR professional to join them in this challenging role. Reporting to the APAC HR Director, you will ensure the timely identification, design and delivery of learning solutions that enable the achievement of business objectives. The role will partner with the business, HR Community in APAC and the broader Global Learning Organization to determine learning needs, provide impactful solutions, and ensure effective implementation. Ideally, you are degree qualified preferably with specializations in OD/talent development. Prior experience in running a sales academy will be highly advantageous. You are highly collaborative and work well with cross-cultural senior management. This is an individual contributor role, so high execution levels will be expected of this role. Dynamic and committed, you work well in a highly diversified and global culture. Candidates with prior international experience will be preferred. To apply, please submit your resume to Cecelia Koh at, quoting the job title and reference number CK3245\HRM, or call (65) 6333 8530 for more details.

banking | ďŹ nance | human resources


issue 11.7

Highly Visible Role Senior Manager

executive appointments HRM Awards 2009 Sponsor of the Best HR Manager of the Year Award Asiamoney Headhunters Poll 2009 Best Headhunting Firm - Middle/Back-Office category No. 2 in Asia

Manager, Global Reward Programs

Learning & Talent Director

HR Manager

Industry Leader

Industry Leader

Listed US MNC

Globally Well Respected

Global Role

Regional Employee Relations experience

Progressive Organization

Business Focused

Strong Business Partnering

Globally respected as one of the World’s leading companies in its field, there is now an opportunity for a high caliber C&B Manager to join them.

Our client is a premier shipping & logistic services company with an established network globally.

Our client is a global leader, serving customers in more than 100 countries. There is an opportunity now for a high caliber HR professional to join their team.

Ideally, you should be Degree qualified and have a minimum of 6 years experience with solid C&B experiences. Good knowledge of compensation practices, legislations and trends is highly advantageous. You are proactive, possess a “can-do” attitude, and a proven leader with strong communication and influencing skills. You are confident and have no issues dealing with senior management. To apply, please submit your resume to Susan Lim at, quoting the job title and reference number SU3339\HRM, or call (65) 6333 8745 for more details.

In this role, you provide HR management of employment, employee relations and compliance activities. You deliver human capital management strategies for workforce planning, staff development, employee relations and process improvement. You will also define and deliver HR metrics to senior management.

You will have at least 10-15 years of learning and development experience gained in a MNC with a proven track record in conceptualization and design of learning and talent management programs that drive business performance. You will be driven and possess strong influencing skills.

You are HR qualified and have minimum of 7 to 10 years in a progressive generalist experience in Human Resources with at least 3 years in a manager level role and background emphasis in Employee Relations, Employment and Government Compliance. Proven experience in coaching employees and management through complex and difficult issues by judgment that is consistent with standards, practices, policies or government law. You are also an excellent communicator with strong influencing and interpersonal skills.

To apply, please submit your resume to Adnan Atan at, quoting the job title and reference number AA3011\HRM, or call (65) 6333 8530 for more details.

To apply, please submit your resume to Susan Lim at, quoting the job title and reference number SU3296\HRM, or call (65) 6333 8745 for more details.

Licence No: C690801Z

Reporting to the VP, Global Reward Programs, you will lead the review and development of the Global reward programs and processes for the organization in line with the global reward philosophy. You will assess the internal equite and external competitiveness of the reward programs. You will plan and manage the annual review process and communication to ensure the region HR are aligned and met.

Reporting to the Group Head of HR, you will be responsible for the Talent Management & Organisational Development functions globally. You will develop a comprehensive learning & development strategy, and conceptualise and design innovative and effective learning & development programs in support of the company’s strategic people agenda. You will coach, develop and engage learning & talent development team to deliver aligned professional services that meet business expectations and upholds the company’s values.

(Employee Relations)

issue 11.7


executive appointments



issue 11.7

executive appointments

issue 11.7


executive appointments


issue 11.7

executive appointments

issue 11.7


executive appointments

Human resources professionals speak to tHe experts senior talent manager plan for the future.

regional Hr Director lead the Hr function across apac.

This exciting Talent Manager opportunity is with a leading APAC energy company. Reporting to the Head of HR, as the ideal candidate you should be familiar with a structured environment. Bringing new perspectives, you’ll offer refreshing ideas and ways to simplify existing procedures. You are able to manage a succession plan from senior management to the graduate intakes and develop the talent pipeline. With a high energy personality, you have had exposure to both the private and public sector and a degree background with at least six to eight years of relevant experience.

This exciting and fast expanding multinational within FMCG is seeking a Regional HR Director to join their headquarters in Singapore. You’ll be providing HR leadership to the CEO, executive team and board and assurance around alignment and consistent HR delivery across all countries. You will also provide operational HR day-to-day support to the Singapore local team and leadership/coaching to country HR teams around Asia. You will review and implement policies on remuneration, recruitment and expatriation as well as performance management, leadership development and organisational development.

Hr relationship manager – operations & technology excellent career progression.

Hr Business partner for private Banking critical advisory and support role.

A bank with great presence across Asia requires an HR Relationship Partner to manage a portfolio of 500 staff across Singapore looking after the operations, IT technology and infrastructure business. A strong HR generalist background within technology, IT, infrastructure or operations will serve you well. Value will be placed on those with a good blend of HR and a quick ability to adapt to a fast paced, changing environment. This is a very hands-on role requiring strategic interface. Career prospects are excellent.

This global investment bank based in Singapore is looking for a VP level HR Business Partner to play a critical advisory and support role for private banking in South East Asia. You will be expected to provide creative and pragmatic advice and guidance to business clients to effectively manage and resolve human capital issues. You must have strong client and business acumen, prior experience ideally supporting a private wealth management department and the ability to communicate and partner effectively at all levels of the business.

please contact ash russell, mamta shukla, thomas Girling or Vargin Yeke at or +65 6303 0721.


issue 11.7

executive appointments

issue 11.7


executive appointments

Your success

is our


1) AssistAnt HR MAnAgeR • HR Manager • Paya Lebar • Attractive salary Our client, one of the leading Restaurant Chain operator is looking for an Assistant HR Manager to join their team.

Responsibilities: • Responsible for providing the full spectrum of Human Resource (HR) functions with key focus on recruitment, employee relations and compensation and benefits • Develop resourcing strategies, actively source for talent and ensure compliance to corporate policies, statutory requirements and drive initiatives to improve efficiency and effectiveness in the recruitment process • Partner with the Operations Managers to establish recruitment needs and manage all recruiting resources to deliver consistent and timely manpower results • Develop employee retention strategies • Manage grievance handling for the operations staff • Liaise with the department to be involved in other ad hoc HR projects

Requirements: • At least 5 years of experience in managing a large restaurant/F&B chain operation • Candidates with strong experience in HR operation focussing in recruitment will have an added advantage • Proficient in Prosoft HRis • strong team player • Able to work in a fast & dynamic environment • resourceful and independent • good interpersonal skills • Preferably able to commence work within short notice 68

issue 11.7

2) AssistAnt HR MAnAgeR / COM & Ben sPeCiAList • Location: West • Working days: 5 days • salary: negotiable A well-known and established JAPAnese MnC (Manufacturing industry) is inviting suitably qualified candidates fill the position as an Assistant HR Manager / Com & Ben specialist for their expanding business.

Responsibilities: • Assistant to oversee full spectrum of HR including staffing, Compensation & Benefits, training & Development, employee Relations • Focus on Compensation & Benefits and Recruitment (strategize) • Play an active role in new HR initiatives and ad hoc HR projects

Requirements: • Min degree in Human Resources, Business Administration or related discipline • Minimum 5 years of experiences in the full spectrum of human resource - particularly in Compensation & Benefits area • High level of confidentiality and diplomacy • Positive attitude • good written and communication skills interested candidate please submit your updated resume in Ms WORD Format to: Position1: Position2: We regret only short listed candidate will be notified. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

Our People.

Your Success. In 2011, talent is again key to company success. The people whom you identify and recruit are the people who will determine the success of your organisation. And that’s something to be taken very seriously. For over 25 years, Adecco has been helping local and international companies to identify strong talent and to build great teams. Over the years, we have partnered with many of Singapore’s leading organisations – delivering human resource and recruitment services through our network of 20 general staffing and specialist divisions island-wide. Adecco solutions are innovative, professional and unique to your needs. Call us today at 6836 4555 or email to understand more about how we can help you to be successful in 2011.

HRM 11.07  

- Marriage of Minds: HR’s Role in M&A

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you